The Ten Coolest Animated Google Doodles

Today, Google's logo looked like the image above and became a heated topic on Twitter. The logo -- referred to as a "doodle" -- had people wondering why anyone should celebrate the birthday of a dead guy and just who the hell Gregor Mendel was in the first place.

In fact, Google regularly changes its logo to suit the season, holiday or event of the day. There are doodles specific to countries and those used worldwide. Their team of graphic artists have come up with some incredible creations based on the search engine's logo and even others have been submitted by artists not being paid by Google.

Google keeps an entire database of all its doodles, and we searched for our favorite animated and video versions. We remembered some and others were new to us. Here are our top 10.

10. June 16, 2011 Lunar Eclipse

During the lunar eclipse, visitors to Google's home page could watch the progress of the eclipse as it played in real time or you could drag the slider bar around and see what it would look like at various times.

9. September 6, 2010 Google Particle Logo

In 2010, Google put together a particle logo animation (click the link to see it in action) that flew apart the minute your mouse went over it.

8. March 31, 2011 Robert Bunsen's 200th Birthday

On the anniversary of Robert Bunsen's 200th birthday, they came up with an animated science lab that changed when you moused over it. 7. February 11, 2011 Thomas Edison's Birthday

As you can see from the animation above, Google graphic designers put an awful lot of work into this complex design in honor of the late inventor's birthday.

6. February 8, 2011 Jules Verne's 183rd Birthday

A lot of us grew up reading Jules Verne, so when Google came up with this animated through-the-looking-glass-style doodle, it became an instant classic. Move the gear shift on the right to see the changes.

5. May 11, 2011 Martha Graham's 117th Birthday

Whenever we think of Martha Graham, we can't help but think of that scene in The Birdcage when Robin Williams tries to explain to the bored drag performer what he should be doing. Fortunately, Google is more mature than we are and came up with this awesome animated sketch art in honor of the famous choreographer's birthday.

4. April 16, 2011 122nd Birthday of Charlie Chaplin

Talk about going the extra mile for a doodle. For the famous silent film star's 122nd, Google created a short film in his honor. 3. October 9, 2010 John Lennon's 70th Birthday

John Lennon's 70th birthday was a big deal for music fans across the globe and Google, with the help of some great graphic artists and the music from the man himself, created a fitting video tribute.

2. May 21, 2010 PAC-Man's 30th Anniversary

Growing up hanging out in video game arcades made this one extra special for us. On the 30th anniversary of the invention of PAC-Man (it makes us feel old), Google's doodle was an actual working version of the game. Just click the "insert coin" button and have a go.

1. June 9, 2011 Les Paul's 96th Birthday

On the anniversary of what would have been legendary musician and inventor of the electric guitar Les Paul's 96th birthday, Google created perhaps its most interesting and usable doodle ever. Basically a working guitar, visitors could pluck the strings with mouse or keyboard and even record their arrangements. There were some amazing contributions including the "Star Spangled Banner" and "Stairway to Heaven." Rock on.

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