How Jennifer Lopez inspired a Google product

Jennifer Lopez wore an iconic dress. Google noticed.

Google Images is great for a variety of tasks, from looking at cool birds to trying to determine which allergic reaction you’re having now. But did you know the catalyst for this tool was Jennifer Lopez?

A magnifying glass hovers over Jennifer Lopez wearing a green dress.

The actress/musician famously wore a revealing green Versace dress to the 2000 Grammys, resulting in the “most popular search query we had ever seen,” ex-Google CEO Eric Schmidt said.

Google, then two years old, was a text-based search engine with plans to add an image component, but the demand to see images of JLo showed the company what a priority that feature was.

Google enlisted engineer Huican Zhu and project manager Susan Wojcicki (now-former CEO of YouTube) to build it, and had it launched by July 2001. In its first year, Google Images managed to index ~250m images.

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