San Francisco, CA (by Nancy Blair/USA Today) -- Zipper-dee-doo-dah: Google has unzipped its logo for a Google Doodle celebrating the birthday of the inventor of the zipper - an electrical engineer named Gideon Sundback.
Just a click unzips the Google home page - the effect is similar to opening a stage curtain - to reveal a roundup of search results for Sundback (born in 1880) and the history of the zipper.
Sundback is credited with improving upon the work of Whitcomb Judson to make the "separable fastener" (patent No. 1,219,881) that we know today.
Sophia Foster-Dimino from the Google Doodle team and engineer Kristopher Hom collaborated on the doodle, which uses the HTML5 Canvas element that allows for dynamic drawings. (Past doodles highlighting technology include the Bunsen burner doodle in honor of Robert Bunsen's 200th birthday, and a doodle of a mobile on Alexander Calder's 113th birthday.)
The effect works on limited Web browsers -- Internet Explorer 9, Firefox and Google's own Chrome. (It won't work on a mobile browser.)
The "unzipping" piece is built on Google Instant, the same feature that allows you to search as you type, Hom said in an interview. "We like to play with the idea of the home page and try to surprise the user," Hom said. In this case, the pair wanted to "play with the physics and structure of the page."
"We always knew we wanted to unzip the entire page," said Foster-Dimino.
This is the second interactive Google Doodle this week. To observe Earth Day on Sunday, the doodle team used time-lapse photography to create a flowering expression of the Google logo.