AT this time of the year there are lots of lists doing the rounds. Santa Claus has one: naughty or nice. Intelligence agencies have lots: the prerequisites for making these remain classified. But rather than have our readers tremble in fear having nothing to fill their stocking on Christmas morning, or having men in identical suits bundle them into the back of a dark van, we’ll look at the top ten Google search trends in 2013.
Google’s top ten search trends is an excellent barometer for what was hot news-wise in 2013. They’ve also made this rather cool Zeitgeist video and an interactive map showing the top searches around the globe. From titans of history, to the trivial and titillating, if 68 million people searched for it, it’s probably worth a mention. Drum roll please:
1. Nelson Mandela. The South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, politician and philanthropist died on December 5. Mandela (1918-2013) spent 27 years in prison and became South Africa’s first fully representatively elected president in 1994. A hero of civil rights across the world, he symbolised the fight against a racist and oppressive regime.
2. Paul Walker. Sadly at number two, another death. US actor Walker (1973-2013) was killed in a car accident in November. The former child-star and philanthropist shot to fame in the The Fast and the Furious movie franchise.
3. iPhone 5S. The 5S was launched by Apple in September amid much hype and was the must-have gadget of 2013.
4. Cory Monteith. Canadian actor Monteith (1982-2013) had a troubled youth and dabbled in drugs, before becoming clean a decade ago. Recent years saw him shoot to stardom in the hugely popular teen musical TV series Glee, before a tragic relapse lead to an accidental overdose in July.
5. Harlem Shake. This viral Internet meme involves 30-second clips of groups of people – usually co-workers – dancing to Baauer’s dance tune Harlem Shake. Google it, watch it, smile – job done.
6. Boston Marathon. April 2013 saw the hideous and pointless bombing of the Boston Marathon resulting in three deaths and over 250 injured. Two self-radicalised, Chechen-born brothers were identified as the suspects. The elder of the two was killed in a shoot-out with police, the other awaits trial.
7. Royal baby. The birth of Prince George of Cambridge, son of Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, in July was a much-anticipated event for royal-watchers across the globe. Healthy job prospects have given this young man a decent start in life.
8. Samsung Galaxy S4. Another phone makes the top ten, with the South Korean company’s latest Android smartphone launching in New York back in March. The S4 sold 20 million units in the first two months after its launch.
9. Playstation 4. The launch of any variant of Sony’s legendary Playstation games console is sure to cause hype and the PS4 was no exception when it hit stores in November. This writer remembers fondly the Commodore 64, which didn’t make Google’s list as there wasn’t really even Internet in 1982.
10. North Korea. There are crackpot dictatorships and there is the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea – the one the others look up to. North Korea threatened the United States with a pre-emptive nuclear strike back in March. While this was seen as posturing by Kim Jong-un, folks got worried and many needed to check which crazy Kim was in power at the moment.
If you’re not familiar with any of the above, well you know what to do.
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