By Chloe Albanesius (PC Mag): The year-end lists keep coming, and Google today unveiled its annual Zeitgeist, which is an “in-depth look at the ‘spirit of the times’ as seen through the billions of searches on Google over the past year,” Google said in a Wednesday blog post.
The search giant’s Zeitgeist 2012 page splits its top searches into 11 categories: overall searches, images, athletes, events, people, feature films, TV shows, performing artists, consumer electronics, airlines, and Google+ hashtags.
Not surprisingly, a number of tech products made the lists. Apple gadgets captured the attention of Google users – as they did for Yahoo and Bing users – but gaming was also top of mind.
The debate of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA), which led to sites like Google and Wikipedia darkening or censoring their websites in protest earlier this year, also prompted a number of searches from people who wanted to know what the fuss was all about.
Of course, people were interested in more than just Internet freedom. Whitney Houston, Gangnam Style, One Direction, Honey Boo Boo, and more also topped several of Google’s lists. For a look at how the Zeitgeist played out in your area, you can filter by country.
“This year’s site is our most global to date, with a total of 838 lists from 55 countries,” Google said. “We’ve also added a number of new features, including an interactive map that shows where and when some of the hottest terms spiked around the world, and a Google Zeitgeist Android app coming out later today (with an iOS version coming soon too).”
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