April 01, 2013, 9:50 AM — I used to like April Fool's Day, but now it's become this sea of fake information from legitimate companies, all trying to tell the world how clever they are for coming up with lame attempts at humor or trying to prank people.
It's as if everyone suddenly decided that they could write a story or do a video for The Onion, which basically takes the April Fool's joke and spreads it out to every other day of the year. In fact, a good April Fool's joke would be if The Onion covered legitimate news for a day.
That said, here's the roundup of all of the different April Fool's videos we've stumbled across, from Google to YouTube to other companies trying to get some news coverage from blogs like ours that highlight these kind of things. Groan or enjoy at your own peril.
YouTube shutting down:
YouTube didn't really fool anyone with this video - even though they uploaded it on March 31, not April 1 - if you really want to prank someone like this, upload it on Feb. 18.
UPDATE: You have to admire YouTube's dedication to this prank - they're now doing a live announcement ceremony where they're announcing the nominees for Best Video:
Google goes all out
Google typically does a ton of April Fool's jokes. This year, we get Gmail Blue, Google Nose and Google Maps Treasure, along with "Google Fiber to the Pole", and Google's "Levity Algorithm".
Google Treasure Maps: In addition to the video, you can check out your own neighborhood to see if there's treasure there.
Google Fiber to the Pole:
Even the enterprise team is in on the joke. Here's a video called "Levity Algorithm", courtesy of the Google Enterprise channel:
We'll be updating this post throughout the day with other jokes. Stay tuned.
Ubisoft has uploaded this "game trailer" for its title "Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon" by proclaiming that it's 2007, and it's the future - with a VHS-style video tape and something that looks like it was made in the '80s or '90s:
Dishonored Golden Cat E3 Gameplay Walkthrough
The folks over at Bethesda Softworks have published this "gameplay walkthrough" of their video game "Dishonored" with some relatively funny jokes, including this one: "The models actually age over time, so if you waited long enough behind this guard, he would actually die of old age." Hee.
Honda recently announced the addition of an in-car vacuum cleaner for one of its new models, so on April 1 we get the HondaHAIR, an attachment that uses the vacuum attachment to cut people's hair while inside the car:
Fake technobabble from SciShow
If you watch a lot of science-related videos on YouTube, you'll likely be impressed by the vocabulary of this video, in which the world is introduced to the "Retro-Proto-Turbo-Encabulator":
Just try and skip these ads
From RhettandLink, we get a video titled "Funny Baby Panda Kiss", but instead of that we get a series of fake YouTube ads, with the ability to "Skip Ad", but in reality the ads just skip ahead to another fake ad. So don't skip, and just enjoy the fake ads!
ThinkGeek's fake products impress us:
The best part about ThinkGeek's fake products is that you always hope they actually make them. First up, the "Amazing Bane Mask Walkie Talkies":
Here's another: "Aliens Chestburster-in-a-can":
Here's the "Adventure Time BMO Interactive Buddy"
Here's the "Creeper Body Pillow":
And finally, the "Death Star Trench Toss" game:
Wiggle your body to input text into your smartphone
SwiftKey gives us this fake video for its "SwiftKey Tilt", which will revolutionize smartphone typing by letting users "wiggle or shimmy" in order to insert words without touching the phone:
Sony's Animalia lineup of tech for pets:
Sony's April Fools joke involves a bunch of entertainment-related tech gadgets for dogs, cats and hamsters.
Troll Appreciation Day:
Mashable's video unit produced this video, in which it announced its first-ever "Troll Appreciation Day", with an event in New York City with panels such as "Time Traveling: How to Get 30 Seconds of Your Life Back" and "Speling Lessons". Hee.
Toshiba's Shibasphere gaming console:
Toshiba's first-ever gaming console, the Shibasphere, features "a completely controller-free interface, and Logical Aggression Monitoring that deploys positive therapeutics to prevent emotionally devastating rage-quits."
Other non-video April Fools jokes:
* Roku's Streaming Shades
* Moving service Unpakt is letting you play Space Invaders on its home page.
* Chick-Fil-a's Facebook page featured two fake photos - one announcing that they're now going to be open on Sundays (the chain famously closes on Sundays), and the other a new line of chicken-flavored gum and nose strips (so you can smell the aroma of their chicken sandwiches at night.
* Disney produced this story about a Hidden Mickey being found on the moon.
* Verizon FiOS announced "FiOS Hipster" service, where cool people can downgrade their Internet speeds to 56Kbps. The "limited time bundle offers" includes "audio from your favorite shows pressed into vinyl", and "access to the cloud through AM radio." Sadly, it's not available in Brooklyn.
Keith Shaw rounds up the best in geek video in his ITworld.tv blog. Follow Keith on Twitter at @shawkeith. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.