Visitors to the Google landing page on 14 August 2009 would have seen the special logo that the search giant put up for the day, which celebrates the birthday of Hans Christian Ørsted who was born in 1777.
Ørsted was a Danish physicist and chemist who made numerous contributions to science. He is probably best known for discovering that electric currents can induce magnetic fields, paving the way for breakthroughs in electromagnetism – and, ultimately, leading to modern communications solutions such as cellular communications, and countless others.
He also had an impact on modern philosophy and was the first person to explicitly describe and name the ‘thought experiment’. One of the most commonly-known examples of a thought experiment is ‘Schrödinger’s cat’ that provides an hypothesis used in quantum mechanics.
As a critical thinker in the 18th century, imagine the friction Ørsted must have dealt with on a daily basis from a European public largely taken with religion and mysticism.
As always, Google picks up on worthy celebrations and uses its logo to pronounce them. Which is rad.