Google’s Zeitgeist 2012 puts the year under a spotlight

We’ve still got 19 days left in 2012 (or 9, if you’re a believer), but Google has once again created Zeitgeist, a year in review based around how we all use Google to search.

According to Google, Zeitgeist means “the spirit of the times.” The folks in Mountain View say that “this spirit can be seen through the aggregation of billions of search queries Google receives every day. The annual Zeitgeist report reveals what captured the world’s attention in the past year—our passions, interests and defining moments as seen through search.”

The official website is also live, but we suggest watching the video before you get lost in a pile of (awesome) stats. You can also still look back on previous Zeitgeists and see what was popular then. We warn you about 2011, though: there are some awesome searches like iPad 2 and our friend Steve Jobs, but the top of the list is Rebecca Black. Maybe the world ended last year and we all just tried to forget about it.

What’s also awesome is that you can take a look at search trends by country, so if you live in Malaysia, for example, you’ll find that Justin Bieber is not on the list. There’s a map that lets you sort by location of event, as well as hundreds, if not thousands, of stunning photographs to take in. We could spend hours on this site going through everything.

In any case, take a look at the gorgeous video Google has put together to re-witness some of the most incredible moments in 2012. Felix Baumgartner makes an appearance, as does footage from the presidential election, Spain winning the Euro cup, and fallen greats like Whitney Houston, Andy Griffith, and Michael Clarke Duncan.