Happy 14th birthday, Google! Has it really been that long? Actually, it’s been longer. If you head over to Google’s search page today, you are greeted by a birthday cake with 14 candles and a hovertext reading “Google’s 14th Birthday”. After a few moments, the cake changes into a Google logo (both pictures seen above). While the 27th is the day that Google has now decided to celebrate, the company’s actual roots go back a couple years earlier.

In 1995 Larry Page was visiting Stanford and managed to have Sergey Brin as his campus tour guide. This was the beginning of their friendship. In 1996, Page and Brin were both grad students and decided to work together to create a search engine. Nope, not Google. The original name was “BackRub”- yes, really.

So where does September 27th of 1998 come in to play with all of this? In 1997, BackRub would become Google and quickly started to become recognized as a worthwhile search engine. By 1998, it was time to start expanding. On September 27th they hired their first employee. That’s what this date is truly about.

Either way you look at it, Google has done a lot in such a short amount of time. Today Google isn’t just about search. Google has managed to reach into about every part of our daily life, happily providing us a great social network, tons of apps and services, search and – of course – the best mobile OS on the market.

So Google, congratulations for the 14(-ish) years of providing great services to your fans. Oh, and thanks for changing your name. Can you imagine the alternative? “Let me BackRub that real quick”… yah.