Across the country cities are competing to become the first to receive Google’s trial deployment of 1 Gbps fiber optics, which is part of Google’s initiative to bring high speed internet to the entire world. Many cities are so desperate to score the bid that they’ve resorted to elaborate stunts, like Topeka, Kansas, whose mayor Bill Bunten signed a proclamation to rename his city to “Google, Kansas — the capital city of fiber optics” for the month of March.
Now Google has responded humorously, adopting an elaborate April Fools’ Day scheme in which it announced that it was changing its name to Topeka. And it really did change it’s homepage to read “Topeka” for the day in traditional Google color print.
Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google (or Topeka) posted a blog detailing the change.
Schmidt boasts that Topeka, Kansas has a storied history, including:
In the early 20th century, the former Topeka enjoyed a remarkable run of political prominence, gracing the nation with Margaret Hill McCarter, the first woman to address a national political convention (1920, Republican); Charles Curtis, the only Native American ever to serve as vice president (’29 to ‘33, under Herbert Hoover);Carrie Nation, leader of the old temperance movement (and wielder of American history’s most famous hatchet); and, most important, Alfred E. Neuman, arguably the most influential figure to an entire generation of Americans. We couldn’t be happier to add our own chapter to this storied history.
(All of that is true, with the exception of Alfred E. Neuman, who is the infamous Mad Comic character).
Google warns other cities that the renaming is a “one shot deal”.