How we think and act are tied to the times in which we live. Google presents a report at the end of the year summarizing some of their most popular searches. It’s a window into some of the things people were most interested in or concerned about over the past year. The fastest rising Google Zeitgeist 2008 search globally was for Sarah Palin with Beijing 2008 coming in second. It is possible to see the results for a variety of countries on the page linked above.

In the U.S., the top 5 fastest rising searches were 1) obama, 2) facebook, 3) att, 4) iphone, and 5) youtube. Swivel has provided a graph showing these five along with beijing 2008 and palin from January 2006 through December 2008:

google-zeitgeist-2008Going to the Swivel site provides a full key to which line is which, but the topmost green line is YouTube and the next highest line is Facebook. Note the huge spike for Obama (purple line) during election week, the first week of November, 2008.

There are numerous other searches the Google Zeitgeist page reports on as well, including search terms such as hybrid car, diy, heath ledger, layaway, and many more.

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