Google Pays Tribute to Les Paul With Playable Doodle

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Google is paying tribute Thursday to legendary inventor and guitar virtuoso Les Paul, who would have been 96 today. The company put up a “Google Doodle,” the name of the long-running series of images the company used to commemorate special events, with an abstract guitar you can actually play.

In the image below you’ll find the ten string guitar in the Google Doodle. Each string plays one note, and in this particular screenshot we used a mouse to play a six-note chord. Better yet, you can record your compositions, and Google will give you a URL you can use to play them back.

Google Doodle for Les Paul

Google Doodle Tribute to Les Paul

But wait, there’s more: Users can also use their keyboard to play — if you click the record button, you can play up to six notes at once by using any of the first ten keys in the four main rows on your keyboard. Each row is tuned the same (there’s only the ten notes), but the ability to access each note in one of four rows makes it easier to play the notes you want.

Not surprisingly, it doesn’t work on the touch-screen versions of Safari on iPhone and iPad.

The video below is one of the better recordings we found on YouTube.

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in honor

Les Paul gets a playable Doodle.

Our troops and veterans got a 1” flag at the bottom of the page.

“Anybody but Google” is starting to have a nice ring to it.


Yeah, I’m no Les Paul, but give me a break.


Most importantly they did this WITHOUT FLASH


geoduck, Are you blind? They used flash. HTML cannot play sounds without flash. Ha-ha.
Press Ctrl+Alt+Del and kill plugin-container.exe. You will not hear sounds.


Can’t be.
I have Flash disabled on my system and it worked fine.


So, this must be what Google has all those android software developers that they hired a while back doing.  Awesome!!


Our web programmer here looked at the code and said it was all HTML5


The headline should read “Nation’s productivity falls to 5%.”

I burned a day messing with that doodle.

Lee Dronick

I have Click-To-Flash installed and didn’t need to click it to pick it. I wonder if they are serving up different pages, one for HTML 5 capable browser and a Flash one for the others. Anyway, see this story about the guitar player


You are so naive:) Of course it’s HTML5. HTML6 is not exists yet.

geoduck, If you disable Flash (or kill the process) and then open or any other page that contain Flash application, Flash (or plugin-container.exe) will be startet automaticly.
You should open and then disable Flash. You will see something like “Adobe Flash crashed… reload the page” on the top of the page. It means that Flash is not working until you reload the page. Have fun.


If you disable Flash (or kill the process) and then open or any other page that contain Flash application, Flash (or plugin-container.exe) will be startet automatically.

I use Click-to-Flash It blocks loading flash until I say go ahead. I don’t and the Doodle works fine.
As an experiment I created a Virtual Machine (XP) without Flash installed. The Doodle would run but without sound.
Then I looked back at Click-to-Flash and found that in Settings it defaults to “Automatically Load Invisible Flash Views”. With this unchecked the Doodle runs without sound. Apparently the sound part must be Flash after all, but because it’s not visible it was still loading. I stand corrected.

More importantly, Click-to-Flash does not completely block Flash unless you fiddle with the settings. I did not know that.


Sorry to tell you flash haters but this Doodle does incorporate flash and an swf for the sound.  So the question becomes why not just use flash for the entire doodle, and a static image for ipad owners, it would have been much quicker to develop and the end result would probably have looked better.  I was once a flash hater mainly because I had invested a lot of time learning the intricacy’s of Javascript,  and I did not want to have to learn Actionscript.  I am happy I did Actionscript 3 is a great language.  The point is Flash does not need to be “killed” just because there is now a canvas and video tag in HTML 4. Yes HTML 4 can mimic (graphically) just about anything flash can do, but not always with the same results, and ease of development.  The two tools should and will coexist and hopefully each will be used for the correct application despite What Steve Jobs believes

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