April Fools Pranks: Google Nose, Twttr, YouTube Shutdown, and More (+Videos)
Google users can now share aromas, Google announced April 1. For example, when searching the term “campsite,” the smell of “Burning firewood with marshmallows and bear droppings,” is provided via Google’s Aromabase.
Users have also shared the aromas of “casino” and “Mars,” according to Google.
Doug Smith, Google engineering lead, says in a video announcement uploaded on YouTube: “Photo auditory olfactory sensory conversions is a phenomenon that’s been promised in science fiction for decades … Our mobile aroma indexing program has been able to amass a 15 million centabite database of smells from around the world.”
Jon Wooly, Google product manager, talks about his dog: “She smells every nook and cranny—this is how she gets information about her world.”
Google Maps Street View Team Finds Treasure Map
Google Maps announced on April 1 that its street view team found treasure maps, which have been scanned and shared with users through Google Maps. A “treasure” feature box appears at the top, right corner of maps on the website.
Dr. Marco Meniketti, marine archaeologist at San Jose State University, says in the video announcement of the new feature: “The maps Google found belonged to the infamous pirate William Captain Kid. He was executed moments after he screamed out ‘200 bars of gold and rich dollars manifold, concealed in realms of the unknown.”
If users were duped by the prank, they probably realized it was in jest when a user is shown in the video burning her laptop (as one would burn a secret treasure map) to get the hidden clues.
Twitter announced on March 31 that it would start shifting toward a two-tiered service. The premium “Twitter” service would allow users to include vowels in their tweets—for a $5 monthly fee. The basic, free service would only allow users to tweet with consonants.
“We’re doing this because we believe that by eliminating vowels, we’ll encourage a more efficient and ‘dense’ form of communication,” reads the announcement.
Joan Rivers tweeted: “Twyttyr? Why byy vywyls whyn yyy gyt “Y” fyr fryy? Syckyrs! #nvwls.”
YouTube Shutdown Prank
YouTube announced it will stop taking submissions as of midnight April 1, and shut down the site until 2023. For the next decade, YouTube judges will watch all the videos on the site to choose the best one. The winner will get an MP3 player and $500.