The developers who built your favorite websites aren’t all just 24/7 coding maniacs; they know how to have a little fun, too!
Some of your favorite sites contain what are called Easter eggs –– sweet features, hidden in plain sight, that you generally have to know about or click around to find.
Here, we’ve collected 11 of our favorites. Prepare to be amazed by the magic lurking beneath the surface of the websites you visit.
(Advice: You will want to either turn on your speakers or put on headphones for some of these. A lot of them include sound.)
1. My Little Google Hangouts.
In the new version of Google Hangouts — previously GChat — type /ponystream into any chat box and then hit Enter. It will not send a message to the person you’re chatting with, but it will stream a bunch of My Little Pony ponies across your screen.
2. Going to 11 on IMDb.
On IMDb, the Internet Movie Database, visitor ratings are usually between 0 and 10. But on the movie This Is Spinal Tap, the ratings go to 11. Because 11 is one more than 10, you see.
3. Getting sophisticated on Vimeo.
On Vimeo, the video streaming site, search the word “fart.” When you do, and then scroll down, farting noises happen over your speakers. Why doesn’t this happen on Yahoo Search? I’ve put in a request to the engineers to make it so.
Many websites have hidden secrets that can be unlocked by typing in the famous Konami Code, a relic of the original Nintendo gaming system. That code (UP-UP-DOWN-DOWN-LEFT-RIGHT-LEFT-RIGHT-B-A) will trigger special stuff on a few sites. Our favorite is BuzzFeed: Just click anywhere against the background and then, using your arrow keys and keyboard, type the Konami Code to see what BuzzFeed would be like if it featured nothing but sloths and the word “sloths.”
5. Kickstart this.
On the Kickstarter home page (Kickstarter.com), scroll to the bottom until you see the scissors. Click the scissors four times, and you’ll be rewarded with the option to sign up for a super-secret newsletter. Maybe they’ll send you some potato salad, too. Shhhh!
6. Do the YouTube Shake.
On YouTube, type in Do the Harlem Shake and then press Enter. The webpage itself will do the Harlem shake like it’s 2013 all over again.
7. Rube Goldberg’s favorite webpage.
OK, so you’re probably not visiting the Dutch shopping site http://hema.nl too often. It’s probably not one of your favorites, unless you’re really into Dutch e-commerce.
But it has an amazing Easter egg that transcends languages. Just click to http://producten.hema.nl/ and then scroll your mouse over the blue cup in the upper-right corner. Then sit back and watch the website go to work.
8. The most Wikipedia Easter egg of all time.
If you head to the Wikipedia page for “Easter egg (media),” you will find a very literal, very unexciting Easter egg in the photo to the right of the description. Just follow the instructions in the photo caption and behold what is perhaps the most underwhelming Easter egg on the Internet. But it’s still an Easter egg! A cracked, unpainted, disappointment of an Easter egg.
9. A better Wikipedia Easter egg.
OK, Wikipedia actually has a cool one: A “This page intentionally left blank” page … on the Internet. Funny!
10. The Netflix sampler.
Think you’ve seen everything on Netflix? Think again. The Huffington Post discovered this strange “Example Show,” which features 11 minutes of a man running around the Netflix campus, doing cartwheels, delivering a monologue from Shakespeare, and dribbling a soccer ball.
Netflix apparently uses it for internal testing purposes. But if you’re super, super bored, you can watch it here.
11. Boss coming!
Shouldn’t every website have this? The sports gambling website Skybet.com — along with several other gaming websites — has a tiny button in its upper-right corner that turns the page into a fake Excel spreadsheet in case your boss walks by. You can access it by touching the small button above the Facebook logo on the top right of the site.
Now if only I could get one of those on Netflix.
12. Who really reads these things?
The blogging platform WordPress, like most large websites, comes with a long, jargon-filled Terms of Service page. But WordPress’ ToS has a little surprise for those who actually read it all the way through. Check out Term #16 (“Disclaimer of Warranties”) and find the link to a special treat.
13. Breakout on Google Images.
Finally, let’s play a game: For the 37th birthday of the classic Atari game Breakout, Google constructed a version of the game in its own search platform. Go to google.com/images, and then search for the term “Atari Breakout.” Before you know it, you’ll be smashing blocks just like you did in 1976.