People are sometimes surprised to discover Easter eggs in After Effects — apparent oddities in the interface. Some of these have been around for a very long time, maybe even since the inception of After Effects. MographWiki collected a list of these a few years ago, but not all of them.
Take part in a hunt for a newer Easter egg, which might seem like a snark hunt of a mythical beast. First clue: “plabt“, a typo for plant, the “factory” where pulsating brains assemble AE bits according to Dan Wilk. Second clue, another hint for the plabt egg(s?) is a feature introduced in CS4, with the last step of typing the word plabt.
Third clue: Wikipedia has a nice version history on After Effects. It’s the second feature mentioned.
3. Sheep sound when you shift-click text at the top of the Effect Controls Panel.
A sheep icon appeared in early AE versions of the Time-Comp, Layers, and Properties palettes. A failed render would make AE bleat a goatish “maa,” which you can still hear by shift-clicking on the layer name area of Effect Controls. Its obscure origin is mentioned near minute 40 of SFMOGRAPH history night. And as noted later in a comment below, additional details have emerged.
The way is hiding in plain sight, so be careful of misdirection. Did you try the wing menus? Did you try all the key combinations?
Note that the original hint above did not tell you to “enter” text.
5. CallAdobe (untested here) is a preset in the Tone effect that creates a DTMF touch-tone.
In a similar way, typing “p” reveals the position property.
6. SAMURAI or HAIRBRUSH Rotobrush appeared more recently.
Easter eggs are hard to find, and the original Company of Science & Art logo has an Easter Egg of sorts: the “parrot head” is really the intertwined letters C, o, S, and A. Also, the team credits project (dated 04/03/13, AE Windows) had an odd XMP description: “it’s pinot butter jelly time.”
For a variety of other curios on AE, see After Effects at 20: A Trip Down Memory Lane.
7. Plabt beta image. In Comp or Timeline, hit TAB to open the Mini-Flowchart then type plabt.