Google’s latest doodle honours Herman Melville, the American author, and his most famous creation Moby Dick.
The doodle is a simple one, showing a white whale eyeing a boat as he swims away, the plume of his water-spout making up the “L” of a watery Google logo.
Clicking through gets you to a search listing of all Melville’s work (along the top), and facts relating to the author are made immediately available in a panel on the right, showing off Google’s evolving search engine which is trying to put more pertinent facts readily at your fingertips.
Melville was born in 1819, and had his first book published in 1846, “Typee,” which was a “A Peep at Polynesian Life.”
The novel was based on his real life sailing exploits on a whaling ship, and exploration of the South Pacific and the Marquesas Islands in particular, where the Typee tribe lived. It became a best-seller in the UK first of all, and Melville was something of an immediate hit – though some critics didn’t take to the novel.
Moby Dick was published in 1851 – but despite positive reviews, it sold poorly at the time. His career then went into something of a downward spiral, at least in commercial terms.
Melville passed away in 1891, at home in New York.