Google released a viral 2013 year-in-review video about the year's top searches and main events last week, featuring a mash-up of top searches across the globe. Google's video, titled "Google Zeitgeist: Here's to 2013," has garnered over 10 million hits since last Tuesday.
"In 2013, the world searched for… new beginnings," the video opens, with "new beginnings" typed into the Google search engine. As the music for Jetta's "Feels Like Coming Home" plays in the background, a joyous Kate Middleton stands holding baby Prince George, right next to her husband Prince William. The "royal baby" ranked number 7 in global search trends on Google for 2013.
The "new beginnings" theme continued with more controversial scenes. Following the royal baby, the video turned to a gay couple celebrating a "wedding" with their large, celebrating extended families. Then, as if to give the religious response, Pope Francis kisses a diseased man in St. Peter's Square. Time Magazine's Person of the Year had the worldwide search rank of 81st for "new pope."
As the first American pope fades into the background, a satellite drifts away from the earth, as the Google search engine plugs in "New Frontiers." As the man-made object soars into space, a woman proclaims "we are now in the position to look at the other worlds of our solar system."
Next, Google responds to a vocal request for "ways to help." President Obama's voice resounds in the background – "Our values call upon us to care about the lives of other people we will never meet" – as runners start the Boston Marathon and a rebel uplifts his son, holding the flag of the Syrian uprising. A Google search on "courage" brings up Pakistani education activist Malala YouSafzai, who declares "we realize the importance of light when we see darkness."
"Goodbyes" brings up the world leaders who died in 2013, from Baroness Margaret Thatcher (1925-2013) to "The Fast and The Furious'" Paul Walker (1973-2013) to South African anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela (1918-2013). "Inspiration" evokes crazy stunts, such as a man skydiving from a falling hummer, David Beckham flying in midair, and even an underwater "Harlem Shake" video. Daniel Day-Lewis' moving tribute to his wife in accepting "Best Actor" at the Golden Globes in January also makes an appearance, as does a crazy backflip video over a canyon.
The inspiration theme continues with the popular music videos of 2013, including Ylvis' "The Fox (What Does The Fox Say?)" and Daft Punk's "Get Lucky."
For the grand finale, Google featured a young boy running behind Batman, his cape flying in the air. The song and video end as "Batkid" raises his fist in the air, proclaiming good will to the people of San Francisco. "Batkid" ranked 100 in the top worldwide searches on Google.
The top ten search terms for 2013 follow below.
1. "Nelson Mandela"
The Anti-Apartheid leader and first black president of South Africa died this year, triggering accolades and applause for his accomplishments.
2. "Paul Walker"
This American actor, most famous for his role in The Fast and the Furious film series, died in November. He also founded Reach Out Worldwide, a humanitarian relief team which Walker used to help Haiti following the earthquake in 2010.
3. "iPhone 5s"
The newest smartphone from Apple garnered worldwide attention for new features and the lower price available through Boost Mobile.
4. "Cory Monteith"
This Canadian actor, best known for his role on the TV series Glee, died in July this year of an overdose of heroin and alcohol.
5. "Harlem Shake"
This internet meme involves a comedy sketch to part of the song "Harlem Shake," and has led to thousands of videos on YouTube from diverse groups across the globe.
6. "Boston Marathon"
During this year's Boston Marathon, Chechen Islamist brothers set off two bombs, killing three spectators and wounding more than 200. One of them – Dzhokhar Tsarnaev – then made the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.
7. "Royal Baby"
Kate Middleton, wife of Prince William of England, gave birth to a baby boy in July of this year. The "royal baby" garnered a great deal of attention, as Prince George is third in line to the throne of Great Britain.
8. "Samsung Galaxy S4"
This new smartphone was released in April this year and includes new features such as the ability to detect a finger hovered over the screen, and eye tracking functionality. It became the fastest selling smartphone in Samsung's history, with 20 million units sold worldwide in 2 months.
9. "PlayStation 4"
Launched on November 15, this new video game console from Sony competed with Nintendo's Wii U and Microsoft's Xbox One, the eight generation of game consoles.
10. "North Korea"
In 2013, tensions between North Korea and South Korea, the United States, and Japan, escalated following threats of imminent nuclear attacks against these countries, under new leader Kim Jong-un.