illustration showing the Google label along with cats and mathematical signs

Good morning, Internet. You are a mysterious animal, but we know a few things about you. We see some of these things borne out in Google’s “top searches of 2014” list. More than two-thirds of all online searches go through Google, comScore reported in April 2014, so Google’s annually released list is a glimpse into a major portion of Internet traffic flow.

For example, we know the Internet likes to be informed about ongoing news events. Google’s trending search terms of 2014, which Google defines as terms that were much more commonly searched in 2014 than in 2013, reveal that people wanted to learn more about events from all around the world.

Trending Searches

1 Robin Williams

2 World Cup

3 Ebola

4 Malaysia Airlines

5 Flappy Bird

6 ALS Ice Bucket Challenge


8 Ferguson

9 Frozen

10 Ukraine

Trending IPOs

The Internet is also interested in tech-related initial public offerings, or IPOs. IPOs mark the first time a company publicly sells stock. They’re milestones for companies, though no guarantee of success. Most of the top “CompanyName IPO” searches were for technology companies:

1 Alibaba – The owner of the biggest online shopping websites in China

2 GoPro – Makers of portable digital cameras and the source of many viral videos this year

3 King Digital – A major developer of Facebook games

4 Virgin America – An airline

5 Castlight Health – A U.S. healthcare technology company

6 Weibo – A Chinese microblogging site

That’s all very timely. When it comes to doing things, however, it seems many people are seeking long-term skills, assuming Minecraft and Apple’s AirDrop stick around for a while.

Trending “How to…” Searches

1 How to AirDrop

2 How to contour

3 How to vote

4 How to kiss – Oh, Internet, you’re so cute.

5 How to craft

Notably, the #10 search was for “How to DIY,” which Popular Science can teach you.

DIY at PopSci

Here’s another thing we know about the Internet. People with access to it often search it before seeking medical attention. People so reliably google their ailments that searches for flu symptoms can be a gauge of actual flu cases. At the same time, the Internet’s interest in news can overstate the number of cases of illness. You can see a mix of both real symptoms and “news symptoms” here:

Trending Symptoms

1 Ebola symptoms

2 Flu symptoms

3 Pregnancy symptoms

4 Asperger’s symptoms

5 ALS symptoms

6 Lupus symptoms

7 Diabetes symptoms

8 Lyme disease symptoms

9 Typhus symptoms

10 Respiratory virus symptoms

So much for what Netizens learned about, worried about, and learned to do in 2014. Now let’s look at some fun stuff. What gadgets, games, and movies were Google searchers most curious about this year?

Trending Tech Gadgets

1 iPhone 6

2 Samsung Galaxy s5

3 Nexus 6

4 Apple Watch

5 Chromecast

Trending Video Games

1 Destiny

2 Titanfall

3 Watch Dogs

4 ArcheAge

5 Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

Trending Movies of 2014

1 Frozen

2 Interstellar

3 Divergent

4 Gone Girl

5 Lone Survivor

There are two sci-fi movies near the top! Popular Science approves.


Christopher Nolan glams up astrophysics for the most anticipated science-fiction movie this fall. It follows a group of explorers as they travel vast distances in space using a newly discovered wormhole—to save the future of humanity, of course. Read our complete Interstellar package

We’ll leave you with another fun Internet obsession: pets.

Top Questions About Dogs

1 Why do dogs eat grass?

2 Do dogs dream?

3 Why do dogs howl?

4 Why do dogs have whiskers?

5 Why do dogs chase their tails?

6 How to clean dogs’ ears

7 Why are dogs’ noses wet?

8 How to stop dogs from digging

9 How to introduce dogs

10 Why do dogs bury bones?