This is a very old entry — images are small, formatting is off.
Back in June of 2008, Google changed its Favicon after what seemed like years of use of the original uppercase G, and given Google’s sparse branding, this small change was remarkably big, as if it had changed its logo. So it’s quite surprising to see Google change the Favicon once again, less than a year, which in branding time is like one week of building brand equity. It’s also surprising that, well, it’s terrible. The “g” is barely readable, the aliasing (jaggedy eges) on the rounded corners is crude and the overall feel is pretty pedestrian. This is perhaps too harsh a criticism for something as small as 16×16 pixels, but when it comes to Google every detail counts. The new Favicon is also the result of a weird call for entries encouraged by Google to create a new one, and the design is based on one specific submission (which is better than the final one) and inspired by a few others (which are also better than the final one). All in all, a strange, unnecessary change.
Thanks to all that, nearly at the same time, sent the tip.