Tech terms ruled when it came to Google queries in 2010, with stranger-pairing website Chatroulette and Apple’s hip iPad tablet computer being the hottest topics.
Internet gadgets and services displaced celebrities in a ‘Spirit of 2010’ analysis of the most popular queries on the search engine, which went live online on Thursday, at
"An overarching theme is geek," said Google spokeswoman Anne Espiritu. The third fastest search term at Google for the year was 16-year-old Canadian pop singer Justin Bieber, who arguably fell into the technology category, because he was discovered at video-sharing website
Google measures which search topics rocket, and which plummet, in order to get a sense of the "zeitgeist," or spirit, of each year. "Doing fast-rising search terms allows us to see what is truly unique about 2010," Espiritu said. "Think of fastest rising as the shooting stars in terms of popularity."
Seven of the top ten fasting rising search terms for the year were Internet related. Online game websites Friv and Gamezer were on the Top 10 list, along with Twitter, Facebook, iPad, Chatroulette, and mobile phone ringtone service Myxer. Singers Nicki Minaj and Katy Perry rounded out the global Top 10.
Online social networking and mobile gadgets or services remained strong trends in search. The number of people using Google search from mobile devices quadrupled in the past year, according to Espiritu. "People are increasingly relying on their mobile devices to access information," she said. "It seems smartphones have hit the mainstream."
Searches for news stories about Haiti, Chile, earthquake and "oil spill" spiked through the year. Online interest also soared for soccer and the World Cup games in Africa. Google also had results in quirky categories, with "chilli" being the top recipe search for the year and queries regarding Power 90 Extreme home workout systems topping exercise-related searches.
Number one in dance was the "dougie", made popular by 1990s rapper Doug E Fresh. While Google’s free online mapping service logged top search spikes for the World Cup, Eiffel Tower and Hearst Castle, sixth on the list was the term “Things to do.”