Arts & Entertainment

April Fools' Day: 8 best prank stories so far, including Google Maps Treasure Mode (video)

L.A. as seen through Google Maps Treasure Mode.
L.A. as seen through Google Maps Treasure Mode.
Google Maps
L.A. as seen through Google Maps Treasure Mode.
KPCC's offices in Google Maps Treasure Mode's version of Street View — Periscope View.
L.A. as seen through Google Maps Treasure Mode.
Spaghetti is "harvested" in 1961 from the ceiling of an Italian restaurant in London. A 1957 April Fools Day report by the BBC about spaghetti trees fooled many, and has been famous since.
Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

UPDATE 5:20 p.m. Google's had a lot of fun today, including creating Gmail Blue, but one of the fake products they've made for April Fools' Day is about adventure. It's Google Maps' new "Treasure Mode."

Treasure Mode probably won't lead you to any golden trinkets, but it does at least change the physical appearance of Google Maps. Go play around with it at, and who knows — maybe X does mark the spot.

Here's a screenshot of what the greater Los Angeles area looks like in Treasure Mode world, complete with Mann's Chinese Theatre and the Hollywood sign marked on the map:

They even offer the Treasure Mode equivalent of Street View — Periscope View. Here are the KPCC offices viewed through the periscope:

(Hat tip: iO9)
— Mike Roe
Previously: It's the day when the news seems a bit ... off.
  1. Google Nose was unveiled Monday morning. It's "the new scentsation in search." Just put your nose to the screen to sample "15M+ sentibytes."
  2. Google's also offering new options to its "I'm Feeling Lucky" button, including "I'm Feeling Wonderful" and "I'm Feeling Hungry." 
  3. Twitter is out with "Twttr," a version that only lets you use consonants.
  4. YouTube is shutting down until 2023 because it "finally has enough videos" to select the best video of all time.
  5. The Guardian introduces "Guardian Goggles" — "augmented spectacles" that take you to a new universe.
  6. NPR's "Morning Edition" profiled "Hootie and the Time Travelers," a group of reenactors who celebrate the '90s.
  7. Procter & Gamble rolls out Scope Bacon (a few days early, though, so maybe there's hope!).

If you haven't looked at the calendar yet, trust us: it's April 1.

And if you see or hear something that's really funny, please share it in the comments thread.

Meanwhile, the Mirror rounds up the top 10 April Fools' Day pranks of all time. They include the BBC's classic spaghetti trees spoof (image above).