Of course, not everything you get is gold. Some Chrome Experiments are quite silly, but some are downright brilliant. We’ve featured 10 amazing experiments once before, so we dug into the catalog to find 10 more—and dare we say, better—Chrome Experiments that you have to check out.
Chrome Globes [No Longer Available]
Google’s most ambitious Chrome experiment was the WebGL Globe, where they created the spherical earth and turned it into an open platform for geographic data. What this means is that any developer in the world can now add data based on location, and have it represented in cool visuals.
The WebGL Globe was so popular that Chrome Experiments had to start an individual page for it. Heck, just a while ago, I looked through the list to find real-time maps of the Earth and was astounded by the sheer variety available here. It’s impossible to choose the “best” Globe on Chrome Experiments, so just check out the WebGL Globe page. I particularly like the real-time Bitcoin globe and the volcanoes of Planet Earth.
While partially based on the WebGL Globe, A World of Change does a lot more. At its core, it marries Google Search Trends with the WebGL Globe to show you what climate change topics the world is searching about, in real-time. Each search will turn the globe and show you the phrase.
And then it goes a little further. You can tap any major city available on this globe to find the last few searches there, or the most popular climate change topics there. It’s providing a deeper insight into which issues affect which parts of the world, not just climate change as a larger global phenomenon. Overall, this is a fascinating visual reminder of our need to go green with our computers and other technology.
BioDigital Human lets you check out every inch of the human body in a Google Maps-like interface. It’s a fascinating, detailed look at every nook and cranny of the male or female body, including a bare-bones skeletal body, individual organs, muscles, veins and arteries, to a fully fleshed out body.
What’s particularly fascinating is the labelling. From a menu on the left, choose what system you want to look at (like the respiratory system or the cardiovascular system) and only that will be highlighted, along with a clear explanation of what it does. Similarly, the “Conditions” tab highlights common ailments or medical procedures like an angioplasty or diabetic kidney problems, complete with a detailed explanation.
BioDigital Human has a premium version too, but the free version is good enough for most users. Just remember, when you’re asked to log in, it’s best to create a new account. Using Google or Facebook logins can lead to data theft.
Carl Sagan’s famous “pale blue dot” speech will forever be enshrined in our hearts, but what if you got to reimagine it? What if you were God and were bestowed with the powers to turn Earth into a completely different planet, choosing its shape, size, terrain, and all other aspects? Live out this fantasy with PlanetMaker.
You can alter the texture of the surface, change the lighting and direct where the sunlight should fall, choose what kind of atmosphere it should have, and even add Saturn-like rings around your planet. You start off with the Earth and then let your imagination run wild.
This is perhaps the most fascinating toy in the Chrome Experiments universe, and a wonderful way to safely keep your kids entertained on the computer.
Perspective. That’s what you get when you visit 100,000 stars. It’s a galactic, accurate mapping of a hundred thousand stars that scientists have plotted so far in our galaxy. Starting from our solar system, you can zoom in and out, and pan to different directions, just like you would while using a 3D Google Map.
To begin, click the button in the top-left corner for the guided tour that takes you from our sun all the way out to the Milky Way, peppered with interesting astronomical facts along the way. At the end of it, you’ll be simply mesmerized by large the universe really is, and hopefully develop a whole new perspective towards our tiny selves.
And in case this gets you thirsty for more space nerdery, we have a few other unmissable tools for space exploration and knowledge.
Fans of The Lord of the Rings (and shame on you if you aren’t one), this one’s for you. This Chrome Experiment was made as a part of the promotion for filmmaker Peter Jackson’s Hobbit trilogy, which carefully maps out all of Middle Earth, the fantasy world envisioned by author J. R. R. Tolkien.
You can walk along with the heroes of the Hobbit movies, as Bilbo and the dwarves make their way through treacherous terrain and fantastic landscapes. You can even fight in a battle or two. But most importantly, you get to feel like you’re a part of the LOTR world, and not just a spectator. We loved it when it was first released, and we still love it now.
Psst, Tolkien fans, we have more awesome apps for the Middle Earth obsessed.
If you love silent films of the Charlie Chaplin variety, you’re going to really dig this one. Peanut Gallery lets you make your own silent movies! It’s an experiment to showcase Google’s Web Speech API, which converts your speech into text in Google Docs, Chrome, and other apps. Here’s how it works.
So basically, a silent film starts playing. Keep your computer’s microphone on and speak when you want to. That will add a “dialog card”, which transcribes whatever you say. Put in a few of those and you’re making your own plot, albeit with old, pre-made footage.
Still, it’s super fun and would make great entertainment for the kids. Don’t forget to give it a title, and maybe even share your creation in the comments below.
Everyone loves Google Maps and its little mascot, Pegman. But Pegman has a secret passion which he hasn’t told many people about, till now. Pegman loves sky-diving and he needs your help. He has selected seven iconic locations across the globe, and he’s going to leap out of the sky to get to them.
As his “navigator”, its your job to control his descent. Go from ring to ring to collect stars and avoid objects to make your way to the landing pad. Google’s love for Easter eggs means you should keep your eyes peeled for some cool sights along the way down. Who knew Google Maps could be so much fun?
Alternative rock band OK Go, famous for making awesome music videos on YouTube, made a mesmerizing Grammy-nominated video a few years ago with dance company Pilobolus for their song All Is Not Lost. Pilobolus, wrapped in green jumpsuits, contort their bodies in perfect choreography to make different shapes.
Well, Google asked for it to be made into a Chrome Experiment that will blow your mind. Start it up and write any phrase you want. Give it a few minutes and then you’ll see the phrase being recreated in a collage of tiny Chrome windows, as Pilobolus members contort their bodies to form those letters. Here’s what it looks like…
A sea of different colored circles are flying around the screen from all directions. In this, you are one tiny circle, controlled by your computer’s mouse. The laws of nature are your only hope of survival. Eat smaller circles and avoid larger circles. Every time you eat a smaller one, you grow a little, letting you eat your previous size. How long do you think you can survive?
There’s something calming about the array of colors, but at the same time, your adrenaline kicks in as you grow bigger and bigger, testing your reflexes to the max. The Circle Game is so simple, so relaxing, so addictive, and so jaw-clenchingly frustrating that you’ll be hooked for hours. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
One of the earliest Chrome Experiments that had us hooked, CubeSlam, is air hockey on the Internet… only better in every way. The simple rules of air hockey apply, where you’re protecting your side from being hit while trying to get the puck (or block, as it is designed here) to hit the opponent’s side. But with every level, the board changes a bit, and new bonus features keep coming up, like “crazy puck”, or a gun to shoot objects, or a vortex in the middle of the board that launches the puck anywhere.
If that wasn’t enough, CubeSlam adds one amazing aspect: live multiplayer. You can invite a friend and his live Webcam feed will show up on the opponent’s wall.
So you’re actually talking with each other, hurling insults and abuses, and seeing the pain of a loss live! You don’t need to install anything apart from Google Chrome, and it’s completely free to play for hours, which makes this one of the best browser-based two-player games out there.
Your Favorite Chrome Experiment?
This is just the tip of the iceberg, and the Google Experiments page is filled with many, many more. For example, there’s the awesome Build With Lego project to construct virtual Lego houses on a Google Map of the real world, or the fantastic GeoGuessr game.
Which Chrome Experiment do you love the most?