TIME Diversions

404 Forever: 10 of the Web’s Best Error Pages

When you've fat-fingered your way to a page that doesn't exist, the tried and true 404 is there to greet you. In no particular order, here are some of the funniest, most addictive and most creative around.

Sad Server

ACM

Man, this web server is a sad, sad sack. It goes on and on and on, at times blaming itself and at times blaming you for expecting too much of it. Buck up!

Link

404 Pac-Man

Blue Fountain Media

I shouldn’t be saying this, but this is the best 404 page on this list. You could click away to some other site now. It kills our time-on-site stats, but I’m just trying to shoot you straight. This error page lets you play Pac-Man inside a giant 404-shaped level. I found it to be more fun than the standard Pac-Man level, even.

Link

Underground Error

BlueDaniel

This one’s definitely elaborate and artsy. Wait for the subway car to show up, then click on one of the open doorways to climb aboard. Once inside, you’re treated to a sleeping passenger and a girl who likes to take photos of stuff. It feels like a scene in a ’90s-era full-motion adventure game.

Link

Screaming Goat

Bluegg

This goat is upset that it’s reached an error page. It shows its frustration by screaming like a human. Then the whole scene repeats itself. You’ll laugh at the scream more than once, assuming you find it funny the first time. Disclosure: I found it funny the first time.

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Lloyd Christmas Can’t Believe What He’s Seeing

Codeo

No! No, no, no, no, no!!!

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Bubble Pop

Hot Dot

This error page features a tiltable 404 made of luminescent, bubble-like circles. Click on a section of one of the numbers and watch a bunch of the circles go flying, only to repopulate moments later. You can get trapped here for a while if you’re not careful.

Link

Yes, Exactly

Kvartirakrasivo

Can’t read what this error page says? Who cares?! Something’s gone haywire, and the two stick figure construction dudes respond by dancing. With a page title like “Ooopps… 404″ and its jibbly-yup-yup (new term!) music, this is the most wonderfully weird error page on the list.

Link

Newman!

Nouveller

An homage to Jurassic Park‘s famous hacking scene, here’s Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight in real life — arguably most well-known as Newman on Seinfeld) scolding you for touching his keyboard. Hint: type “reboot system” three times to get things moving.

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This Could Go On For Days

Tripomatic

This travel site’s 404 page features a soothing, endlessly watchable sunrise-sunset-moonrise loop that delicately blends background hues together, bringing out the stars at night and blue skies during the day.

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Can I Leave Now?

visitsteve

Appropriately titled “The Most Awkward 404 Not Found Page on the Internet,” artist Steve Lambert’s error page features an excruciatingly long video of him explaining that you don’t have to hang around the error page if you don’t feel like it. Bonus points if you watch the whole thing. I did.

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Honorable Mentions

More Like Homestar Ruiner

Z - Homestar

Though not technically a 404 page, this Homestar Runner cartoon about the site crashing has aged well after all these years. The site does have an actual 404 page, which you can find here.

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“We’ve Got Motion!”

And last but certainly not least, the video embedded in this 404 page for Nosh.com’s site is no longer working (irony!), but the original (embedded above) that used to play there is truly outstanding.

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TIME Diversions

Hidden Google: 10 Fun Search Tricks

Google
Michael Gottschalk/Photothek/Getty Images

You could work or you could slack off by trying all these tricks, taking an early lunch and napping in your parked car until 1:30 or 2:00. Totally up to you.

This is where the intro normally goes, but let’s be honest with each other about the nature of this relationship. You’re going to skip right over this part, skim the big, bold headlines, and maybe click on a handful of the blue links. There’s a chance you’ll be mildly amused but you’ll most likely blast a quick puff of air out your nostrils, annoyed that you’ve already seen most or all of these tricks before. You’ll eventually click away to some other site and we’ll never see each other again. We’ll always have this post, though. Thanks for the memories.

Do a Barrel Roll

Search for “do a barrel roll” without the quotes, and hold onto your desk for dear life. Cool, eh? Maybe you’re even a little nauseous.

But the old barrel roll trick isn’t the only Easter egg Google has up its sleeve. Here are several others:

Tilt/Askew

If you’re obsessive and/or compulsive, this trick isn’t going to sit well with you for long. Search for “tilt” without the quotes. Searching for “askew” accomplishes the same end-result.

Change it back! Change it ba-aaack!

Big Answers to Mind-Bending Questions

Search for “answer to life, the universe, and everything” and you’ll get your answer. It’s a real thinker. Of course, Douglas Adams fans knew the answer without having to search for it.

See also: “the loneliest number,” “once in a blue moon” and “number of horns on a unicorn” for a few other cool calculations.

Did You Mean…

Search for “anagram“—did you mean nag a ram? Or try searching for “recursion” instead. Did you mean recursion? Did you mean recursion? Did you mean recursion? Did you mean recursion? You meant recursion, right?

“As I rained blows upon him, I realized there had to be another way!”

It’s a Festivus MIIIRACLE! Google “Festivus,” and once you’ve taken in the wonder of this Google Easter egg, feel free to participate in the Airing of Grievances here in the comments section or indulge in the Feats of Strength with a family member, friend, enemy or stranger at your earliest convenience.

Zerg Rush

An homage to StarCraft, search Google “Zerg Rush” and prepare to protect your search results from a bunch of hungry Google O’s. Click them before they eat all your results. Hurry! Why are you still reading this?!

Blink HTML

Search for “Blink HTML” and OH SWEET BABY J, MY EYES! Brings back some fond memories of simpler web-based times though, doesn’t it? Just needs Bittersweet Symphony auto-playing as a MIDI file.

Party Like It’s 1998

As long as we’re going old-school with blink tags, want to see what Google looked like in 1998? Believe it or believe it, all you have to do is search for “Google in 1998” and you’ll be whisked away. Clicking the initial search results will return the archived versions of those pages, too.

Shake It

While we’re on YouTube, type “Do the Harlem Shake” into the search bar. Ah, memories of a meme from a couple years ago.

Try searching YouTube for these ones, too:

Break It

You can play a game of Breakout, wherein search results from Google Images morph into breakable bricks. Just search for “Atari Breakout” and click the Images tab or go straight to images.google.com and search for “Atari Breakout” there.

TIME Diversions

One of the Web’s Best Cartoons Finally Gets an Update

Homestar Runner has been dormant since late 2010, but it’s back. Hopefully “back” means more than this lone update, but we’ll see.

Aside from the various sites I’ve worked at over the years, I can safely say that HomestarRunner.com is the site I’ve sunk the most time into. That it hasn’t been updated in three and a half years is sad, but there’s just so much there already. I’m baffled that the Chapman brothers were able to keep it going for as long as they did.

As far as the most recent update goes, everyone’s favorite walking speech impediment plays host to a slew of additions to various blasts from the past – the payoff at the end is a pair of downloadable Homestar and Strong Bad themes for Windows 98. Yes, Windows 98 – complete with desktop backgrounds, icons, startup and shutdown sounds, and more.

We’ll see if this is a sign of more to come. I hope it is, but I’ll understand if it isn’t. If it’s an issue of funding, sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo didn’t exist back in Homestar’s heyday, and the Chapman boys could probably raise a small fortune nowadays if they wanted to resurrect the site for good.

Here’s a fun TIME-themed diversion, too: At the end of Strong Bad Email #202, click on the words “duct tape him to the ceiling” to get a peek at Strong Sad and his imaginary friend playing TIME Magazine: The Game. “Spiro Agnew’s favorite slacks! That’s right!”

Homestar Runner [HomestarRunner.com via The Verge]

TIME Video Games

Common Sense Prevails: Goat Simulator Video Game Coming Soon for $10

Never ever EVER underestimate the will of the people when it comes to our desire to run around wrecking stuff as a digital goat.

Never ever EVER underestimate the will of the people when it comes to our desire to run around wrecking stuff as a digital goat.

What began as a half-joke, half… well, maybe a full joke by Coffee Stain Studios, footage uploaded to YouTube of Goat Simulator’s alpha gameplay whipped the collective Internet into such a froth that Coffee Stain has decided to go through with the game. It’s available now for pre-order on Steam for $10.

Since we last checked in with Goat Simulator, some new moves have been added: namely, the ability to use your tongue to grab stuff and swing it around at terrified humans. Aside from that, the overarching premise of the game is pretty simple.

According to its description on YouTube:

Goat Simulator is like an old school skating game, except instead of being a skater, you’re a goat, and instead of doing tricks, you wreck stuff. It brings next-gen goat simulation to YOU.

The Goat Simulator website looks to tamp expectations a bit further by adding that we won’t see multiplayer features and the game isn’t planned for Mac or Linux. We might someday see the ability to cobble together our own levels, however.

Oh, and there’s this disclaimer, too:

Goat Simulator is a small, broken and stupid game. It was made in a couple of weeks so don’t expect a game in the size and scope of GTA with goats. In fact, you’re better off not expecting anything at all actually. To be completely honest, it would be best if you’d spend your $10 on a hula hoop, a pile of bricks, or maybe a real-life goat.

I’m good on hula hoops and bricks, but the possibility of owning a real-life goat hadn’t dawned on me until right now. I’ve got some thinking to do.

Goat Simulator [Product Page via Gamespot]

TIME Web Video

FINALLY, a Goat Simulator Video Game

Immerse yourself in the wonderment of being a goat on the loose in a medium-density residential zone.

Immerse yourself in the wonderment of being a goat on the loose in a medium-density residential zone.

Run around the streets, but look out for cars! They’re not used to seeing goats. Climb up really tall construction scaffolding (or whatever that is)! Use your head to knock buckets toward humans! Do flips! Enjoy realistic neck physics!

I don’t understand what’s going on here, but I don’t want to understand.

Unfortunately, this game might never be yours to play, as it’s Coffee Stain Studios “just playing around a bit with programming stuff,” according to the YouTube video’s description.

Understandably, there are several YouTube comments, Facebook comments and tweets asking for this to become publicly playable. Keep your hooves crossed that it’ll happen.

Goat Simulator 1st Alpha Gameplay [YouTube via Geekologie]

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