Found: The Mythical Google 404 Page!!1

from the check-this-out dept

We'd already mentioned the fact that Google abruptly turned off its realtime search, after its agreement with Twitter expired. But apparently the whole thing was so abrupt that it even caught Google by surprise. After all, the company still lists Realtime Search in its product listing page (right at the top of "specialized search" no less):
But, even more amusing is that if you click on it, you don't get a redirect. You don't get an explanation. You flat out get a 404 not found page, something I don't recall ever seeing at Google before:
Now, there are a few different interesting things about this. While you can actually find a Google 404 page just by typing nonsense after the slash (though, oddly, some nonsense returns you to the main Google home page, and some leads you to the 404), this is the first time I've run into it while just clicking a regular link on Google. It's a bit amusing that the title is: "Error 404 (Not Found)!!1." I'm not sure if that's a joke or a typo.

But what struck me as even more strange is just the fact that a site like Google would have a blank 404 page like this at all. You would think that the search giant would, at the very least, suggest alternative results or try to point you to something useful. Hell, it doesn't even have a link back to the home page, let alone a redirect.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 3:39pm

    Um, Mike? The Google logo is a link back to http://www.google.com/

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    icon
    :Lobo Santo (profile), Jul 5th, 2011 @ 4:00pm

    We Geeks

    We Geeks appreciate a good, lite-weight direct 404 page rather than some BS redirect.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 4:25pm

    Re:

    What's the Google logo?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 4:30pm

    Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    In other news, the light really does go out when you close the refrigerator door.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Clay, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 4:53pm

    Google 404

    I find the page rather elegant in it's simplicity. I laughed the first time I saw it. It simply stated

    404. That's an error.
    The requested URL was not found on this server.
    That's all we know.

    LOL! I love it. Specially "That's all we know."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 5:07pm

    Re: Re:

    The colorful 'Google' directly above the actual 404 message.

    Granted, Google would have been on firmer footing if they had provided a more obvious link, but there is a link.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Jul 5th, 2011 @ 5:37pm

    Re:

    Um, Mike? The Google logo is a link back to http://www.google.com/


    Yeah, but that's not at all clear to the user. From a usability perspective, normally you'd expect a site like Google to direct people to go somewhere.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Jul 5th, 2011 @ 5:38pm

    Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    In other news, the light really does go out when you close the refrigerator door.


    Sorry, was just having a bit of fun. Didn't realize that wasn't allowed. Next time, I'll ask you first what's appropriate for my own site.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    icon
    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), Jul 5th, 2011 @ 5:59pm

    Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    In other news, out_of_the_blue takes issue with a post on Techdirt.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 6:19pm

    Re: Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    Darn right you will! You're not connecting with us by doing that! Everything on the intertubes is serious business.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 6:28pm

    Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    hahaha.... You got my vote for comment of the week.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 6:37pm

    op fail

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
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    Jay (profile), Jul 5th, 2011 @ 6:51pm

    Re: Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    Coming up next week, out_of_the_blue changes name to sky_is_falling.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    icon
    testcore (profile), Jul 5th, 2011 @ 7:43pm

    Re:

    Summerfag.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    kevin, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 8:28pm

    Not Mythical

    Ive had that for over 2 years

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 10:25pm

    Wow, A Linux Desktop User. :)

    KDE, even?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 5th, 2011 @ 11:41pm

    google.com/anything

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    zub, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 1:26am

    Re: Google 404

    Exactly. Way better then some redirecting hell...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 1:29am

    Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    Are you sure it's not the penguin?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    Kenan, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 4:30am

    404

    If you want to see the 404 page, simply go to it.
    http://www.google.com/404

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    strider, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 5:45am

    no it's not a typo !!!!11one!!1eleven

    You might want to have a look here for further information :
    http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/the-1-phenomenon

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    JB, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 8:01am

    Re: Re:

    Mike, it's been a standard for quite some time to have a site's logo be a hyperlink map with their homepage as the target. I understand that, by virtue of my education and aptitude for learning, my view of the average person is skewed above the 100-IQ mark. However, I still can't imagine the majority--even a large minority--of users would not see the cursor change when hovering over the logo especially since it is brightly colored and draws the attention of the human eye.

    Don't get me wrong, I admire your writings and look forward to more of your opinion(ated) articles.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    icon
    Jordan (profile), Jul 6th, 2011 @ 9:46am

    What's the URL for google's homepage? Not seeing it on this page. Better "Bing" it. :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 9:56am

    Re: Re: Wow, Mike, you keep us on the cutting edge.

    I usually really enjoy your insightful articles, but you seem to be getting overly defensive about this. This post clearly isn't as serious as most of the content on the site. Can't you respond to a little negative feedback without coming on so strong?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 6th, 2011 @ 10:26am

    it makes you wonder what would happen if google just took itself completely offline for a whole day.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    GATE 2013, Jun 27th, 2012 @ 9:07am

    Error 404

    Google.com/hosting also gives this Error 404 (Not Found) see..

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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