What is the origin of April Fool’s Day? Even though there are many theories, this one stands out: it started in the XVI century when the old Julian calendar was replaced by Gregorian calendar. Under Julian calendar the New Year was celebrated on April 1, but it’s been shifted to January 1 under the Gregorian calendar. Those who didn’t like the change or did not hear about it continued exchanging gifts on April 1st, others started amusing themselves by sending mock presents.
Wikipedia has an extensive list of April Fool’s hoaxes from 1999 to 2007. It’s interesting to note that Wikipedia has closed down the editing of all April Fool’s related pages: “Editing of this article by unregistered or newly registered users is currently disabled because of vandalism due to the fact that it is April Fools Day.”
So rather than posting 8 WWW bits for the past week, I present you with my collection 8 creative April Fool’s pranks of 2007:
- Slashdot introduced a Digg and reddit-like rating system to articles, dubbed SlashRating, they even trademarked a new term “slashdottit”.
- Technorati is cleverly rotating series of new April Fool’s logos from the TECHNORATI letters creating phrases like “rotaTe chin”, “haterTonic”, “ino chatTer”, “hoticeranT”, “ho cant riTe”, , “Threaticon”, “ricoTta hen”
- Digital Inspiration released a hack to download movies, audiobooks and music videos and offers them for free from the iTunes store.
- CollegeHumor re-designed their website to appear as if the domain name has expired and has been overrun with spammers. – however after 10 seconds you’re redirected to the live working site, and never see that page again.
- ThinkGeek‘s front page features many fake items for sale, such as SnūzNLūz – Wifi Donation Alarm Clock, an 8-bit tie, a Wii remote helmet, amongst other items. The page also features an iPhone which they are now shipping.
- Uncyclopedia replaced their main page with a page similar to Wikipedia’s, linking to semi-related articles. It also claims Wikipedia is a parody of the site.
- newsaskew – Everything on the home page is backwards.
- reddit.com changed it’s logo to ‘redacted’ and added a censorship to the titles and comments of submitted articles. This prank annoyed many reddit users who ask for the April Fool’s day to end early.
Have a Happy April Fool’s Day everybody :-)