A Google search history can tell you a lot about a person — or a country, or an entire planet.
Today, Google is, in many ways, a barometer for our contemporary global culture, tracking, aggregating, and collecting data from all of our pressing questions, curiosities, fears (self-diagnoses on WebMD, anyone?), and so much more.
Each December, Google releases its year-in-review data, called the Year in Search, which serves to shed even more light on the topics that were on people's minds this year. This collection of data showcases all of the people, events, and world-changing moments that caught our attention over the course of 2018.
The top 10 trending Google searches this past year definitely check all those boxes:
1. World Cup
2. Hurricane Florence
3. Mac Miller
4. Kate Spade
5. Anthony Bourdain
6. Black Panther
7. Mega Millions Results
8. Stan Lee
9. Demi Lovato
10. Election Results
Google's Year In Search goes even deeper, taking a look at several different individual categories — from GIFs to news to TV to politics, and more — and crafts an in-depth picture of what people alive in 2018 were interested in learning more about.
The top trending searches in each category varied greatly; some wondered who won the Mega Millions, others wanted to get a better idea of what Bitcoin is. Interestingly, this year's top how-to searches were related to voting and voter registration, the most searched for movie was Black Panther, and the most pressing beauty question had to do with applying magnetic lashes.
Google searches encompass countless facets of the human experience, and it's fascinating to see it all boiled down to one cohesive report. However, judging from the several searches pertaining to tragedy, these trends also touch upon some of the darker realities of our world, including the fact that mental illness, addiction, and suicide continued to affect — and even claim — the lives of some of our most beloved artists and celebrities in 2018.