Insights from Googlers into our products, technology, and the Google culture
Through the Google lens: search trends July 18-24
July 25, 2014
Based on search, it seems like a lot of you spent the last seven days slurping ice cream cones, jamming to pop parodies and starting the countdown to a certain February flick. Could be worse. Here’s a look at what people were searching for last week:
Fifty shades of search
Searchers were “Crazy in Love” with the new trailer for
Fifty Shades of Grey
, set to a special Beyonce recording of her 2003 hit. There were more than a million searches this week for the ….ahem… hotly anticipated movie, which comes out next Valentine’s Day. In addition to the trailer, people were also looking for information on
[jamie dornan] and [dakota johnson]. Beyonce was in the spotlight for other reasons too, following rumors that her marriage to Jay-Z was on the rocks.
“Mandatory” and musical marriages
After three decades in the biz, Weird Al has finally made his way into the Billboard No. 1 spot with his latest album, “Mandatory Fun.” Though his shtick hasn’t changed, when it comes to promoting his parodies, the artist has adapted to the Internet era, releasing eight new videos in as many days to generate buzz—and
more search volume
than at any other point in the past five years. As an editor, of course, I’m partial to “Word Crimes” (which has more than 10 million views on YouTube), but it’s just
one of the many “breakout” titles
searchers are looking for, along with [tacky], [foil] and [first world problems].
In other musical news, Adam Levine’s bride [
] was trending this week after the two got married in Cabo San Lucas. And another Mexico wedding had people searching for information on [
], the new husband (after a surprise ceremony) of
star Naya Rivera.
Foodie ups and downs
A national fruit recall at stores like Costco and Whole Foods led people to the web to learn more about [
]. For many, the possible contamination may have been an extra incentive to celebrate several less than healthful food holidays: Last Sunday (or should we say sundae?) marked National Ice Cream Day, and people were
for their favorite flavor. National Hot Dog Day took place just a few days later, though sausage searches
paled in comparison
. And just in case all that junk food made you thirsty, yesterday’s
National Tequila Day
had searchers looking for the perfect margarita recipe.
Tip of the week
Overindulged on ice cream last weekend? It’s easy to get back on the healthy eating train with a quick search. Just ask Google “how many calories in hummus?” or “compare coleslaw and potato salad” to get nutrition info on your favorite summer foods.
Posted by Emily Wood, Google Blog Editor, who searched this week for [coming of age in samoa] and [how old is weird al]
Little Box Challenge opens for submissions
July 22, 2014
These days, if you’re an engineer, inventor or just a tinkerer with a garage, you don’t have to look far for a juicy opportunity: there are cash prize challenges dedicated to
landing on the moon
building a self-driving car
cleaning the oceans
, or inventing an
. Today, together with the
, we’re adding one more: shrinking a big box into a little box.
Of course, there’s more to it than that. Especially when the big box is a power inverter, a
device used to convert the energy that comes from solar, electric vehicles & wind (DC power) into something you can use in your home (AC power). We want to shrink it down to the size of a small laptop, roughly 1/10th of its current size. Put a little more technically, we’re looking for someone to build a kW-scale inverter with a power density greater than 50W per cubic inch. Do it best and we’ll give you a million bucks.
There will be obstacles to overcome (like the conventional wisdom of engineering). But whoever gets it done will help change the future of electricity. A smaller inverter could help create low-cost microgrids in remote parts of the world. Or allow you to keep the lights on during a blackout via your electric car’s battery. Or enable advances we haven’t even thought of yet.
Either way, we think it’s time to shine a light on the humble inverter, and the potential that lies in making it much, much smaller. Enter at
—we want to know how small you can go.
Posted by Eric Raymond, Google Green Team
Through the Google lens: search trends July 11-17
July 18, 2014
The World Cup is over and order has finally been restored to the universe. Now that football mania is behind us, searchers are getting the latest info about the world off the pitch. From Tesla announcing their cheapest car ever, the $35,000 Model 3 (OK, so “cheap” is relative) to the tragic events surrounding
Malaysia Airlines Flight 17
, read on to see what trended this week.
Cutting the cord … but not really
Netflix binge-watchers had a near-panic attack when rumors swirled that beloved show
Orange is the New Black
was getting the axe. But have no fear, friends—the show lives to see another 13 episodes and quite humorously
of its existence. On the other side of the entertainment galaxy, comic book fans were shocked to learn that Marvel’s
is now a woman—and a rather
one at that! “Thorita” won’t be taking up her hammer against
, the new villain in the upcoming Avengers movie—that role will still be held by Chris Hemsworth. Still, if producers do decide to change it up, we’re pretty sure
deserves the role after her performance on American Ninja Warrior left searchers
pumped for more
The sports stars are out tonight
Athletes put on their best three-piece suits and gowns for the
on Wednesday, and people turned to search to see which of their favorite stars took home the honors. (FYI OKC Thunder star Russell Westbrook, as usual, won
the red carpet
battle for fashion supremacy, hands down.) While Olympic swimmer
couldn’t make it to the awards show, he still managed to make a splash on the trends charts when he came out as gay. Back on the field, it was the end of an era in baseball as New York Yankees legend
?) Jeter played in his last all-star game.
It was a tale of two Brookses this week as searchers were surprised to find out
got the boot from Saturday Night Live after just one season—tough crowd.
, on the other hand, had a great week when he announced his upcoming fall tour to much fanfare (“searchfare”?). In the reality TV scene, Claire Leeson from England spent more than $30,000 (so, basically a Tesla Model 3) to look like her celebrity idol Kim Kardashian. And another Kardashian lookalike made it to the trends charts when
married Kim’s ex-boyfriend Reggie Bush—six degrees of Kim Kardashian anyone?
Tip of the week
Didn’t catch the ESPYs? Just ask Google, “who won best male athlete?” to see who took the crown this year and find a list of past winners.
Posted by Jenise Araujo, Communications Associate, who’s [on the run] and searching for [crazy eyes] and [dandelions]
America's businesses are using the web to grow
July 17, 2014
Over the past few months, we’ve had the chance to talk to businesses all over the country and hear stories of how they’ve become successful. For many, it’s pretty simple: the Internet. The web is helping businesses and communities across the U.S. to grow and succeed. In fact, last year Google’s search and advertising tools helped provide $111 billion of economic activity for more than 1.5 million businesses—advertisers, publishers and nonprofits—across the U.S.
, a boat supply company located on Bainbridge Island, off the coast of Washington State. Because of their remote location, bringing traffic to their website using
plays an important role in their ability to sell their 250,000+ boat supplies to customers in 176 countries. When it’s winter in the U.S., they rely on customers located in other parts of the world where it’s boating season, with the web bringing them business from any place, in any season.
Or meet Don Morton, who taught reading, writing and language in lower-income neighborhoods in my home town of Chicago for nine years. In 2005, he began creating his own materials to supplement what the school system provided. Realizing that his worksheets could be useful for students and teachers everywhere, he created
to provide his worksheets for free. Don started using
to offset his costs by placing ads next to his content, and today he’s able to work full-time on his website and make an impact on students around the world.
These are just two examples of enterprising people making the most of Google tools to find new customers, connect with existing ones and grow their businesses; you can find plenty more of them in our
Economic Impact Report
. Our tools help connect business owners to their customers, whether they’re around the corner or across the world from each other. And when businesses flourish, it’s good news for the rest of us. Recent data shows that businesses that are online are expected to grow 40 percent faster and hire twice as many workers as businesses that aren’t. Every year, it gets clearer that the web helps lead to more successful businesses, stronger economies, more vibrant towns, and more prosperous communities.
about our economic impact in all 50 U.S. states, and how businesses are finding success through the web. Whether it’s a part for a boat or a grammar worksheet, we’re proud to play a role in giving businesses the tools they need to do more--to grow and thrive and connect with customers and communities all over the world.
Posted by Jim Lecinski, Vice President, Customer Solutions
From superheroes to the battle of the battles—the World Cup through search
July 14, 2014
Yesterday, Germany won their fourth world championship, and, over the course of the last month, the world watched them do it—in Brazil, in bars and living rooms around the world, on their phones and laptops and tablets. This World Cup was the most digital, most connected, and most searched global event we've seen to date. There were more than 2.1 billion tournament-related searches on Google, many of which we shared on our
Looking at the trends from each match, you’ll see some topics that you’d expect to catch the world’s attention, such as top players and highly-anticipated matches. But who would have guessed that there were
10x more searches
in the U.S. for the World Cup than for the NBA Playoffs? Or that
, American soccer star who also has a rap single, had 2x more search interest than Jay-Z? Or that after
Ángel di María's
divine goal against Switzerland, he netted 4x more global searches than his fellow countryman, Pope Francis?
Mexico’s Guillermo Ochoa was the most searched goalie in the tournament, but
Tim Howard’s heroics
could hardly be forgotten. German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer not only snagged third place in search, but took home the 2014 Golden Glove award and a World Cup championship to boot.
Germany vs. Brazil
semifinal was the most searched match throughout the tournament, leaving many people around the world asking, “What is the biggest win in World Cup history?” Meanwhile, some countries were ready to move on to the next opportunity: after the third place game, Brazilians
for “World Cup 2018” than for the final game between Argentina and Germany.
No World Cup would be complete without a few surprises—and the creative people of the web were ready to weigh in. Uruguay's Luis Suarez was the most searched player meme, and at the time of the Uruguay-Italy game, there were 20x more searches globally for “Suarez Bite” than for snake, spider, tick, fly, dog and mosquito bites combined.
And if a search Dream Team was created, you’d see these 11 players strutting their stuff on the field. While German star
didn’t make this list, he was a favorite on search. Even before his goal won it all in the final, he attracted 4x more search attention than Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bündchen, who presented Germany with the championship trophy.
Beyond the impressive stats on the field, we’ve got some numbers of our own to share:
Our team watched 107+ hours of football (we didn’t even need a water break!) and spent 250+ hours bringing you regular insights from our first ever World Cup trends hub. We hope you enjoyed the excitement of the tournament as much as we did, and for more trends, visit
or check out our
, Communications Manager, who searched for [
iran vs. argentina
brazil’s 12th player
], and of course [
world cup schedule
] throughout the tournament
Through the Google lens: search trends July 4-10
July 11, 2014
Though the World Cup continued to draw
, this week it had some company. So in addition to Neymar, people were searching for
(who's taking his talents back to Cleveland) and
(who lost at Wimbledon after a tough match). And following the announcement of this year's
Emmy Award nominations
, people turned to search to learn more about the snubs and surprises, including Laverne Cox, the first openly transgender nominee. Here’s a look at some more top trends in search this week, from the Quidditch World Cup to the world’s highest-valued potato salad:
A literary thrill
Author J.K. Rowling was in the news this week after she posted a new
story to the fan site Pottermore.com. There were
more than 200,000 searches
for the site itself (an increase of more than 100 percent over 30 days), as people speculated about whether the new tale signified the coming of more stories about Harry, Hermione and the rest of Dumbledore’s Army. Meanwhile, people turned to search to find the new trailer for another, very different book-turned-movie: the twisty, turny
. Searches for [gone girl trailer] have nearly doubled in the last month.
And baby makes three
The Internet experienced a collective shock on Wednesday when news emerged that beloved actor/
Ryan Gosling and girlfriend [
] are expecting. (With apologies to
.) Hundreds of thousands of people turned to search
, determined to find out the truth. Oddly enough, the phrase [ryan gosling father] had already
in June, after a recent Father’s Day hoax that claimed the Gos had previously adopted a child. And there’s no doubt that many were fervently hoping this, too, was merely a rumor and that they still had a chance with His “Hey Girl”-ness. Disappointed fans will have to console themselves by (re)watching
, which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, and generated
a few searches of its own
. Oh, and congratulations to Ms. Mendes, too.
Summer snack time
Finally, during a week of Fourth of July barbecues, it’s only fitting that there was an unusual number of food-related subjects among this week’s trending topics, starting with a picnic table classic. Last week, a fellow named Zach Danger Brown set up a [
] project to raise funds for… potato salad. Literally. Despite some controversy over its merits, fundraising for Zach’s project is now $45,326—and counting—past the original $10 goal, and
searches for potato salad
were nearly as high on Tuesday as on Independence Day itself. But that’s nothing compared to another Kickstarter project focused on a summer staple. With more than $1.5 million raised so far, the [
] promises not just to keep your drinks chilled (elementary, my dear Coleman), but also offers a bevy of bells and whistles worthy of “Pimp My Ride.” Not only have 50,000+ searches been done on the subject, but the campaign is well on its way to Kickstarter records. Finally, [
] won hearts as well as the mustard winner’s belt at this year’s Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest at Coney Island when he proposed to his girlfriend at the event. More than 100,000 people searched to learn more about this champion of chowing down.
Posted by Emily Wood, Google Blog Editor, who searched this week for [seersucker etymology] and [dragons love tacos]
Searching for the right balance
July 11, 2014
In May, the Court of Justice of the European Union established a “right to be forgotten." Today, we published an op-ed by David Drummond, senior vice president of corporate development and chief legal officer, in the U.K.'s
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
, discussing the ruling and our response. We're republishing the op-ed in full below.
When you search online, there’s an unwritten assumption that you’ll get an instant answer, as well as additional information if you need to dig deeper. This is all possible because of two decades worth of investment and innovation by many different companies. Today, however, search engines across Europe face a new challenge—one we’ve had just two months to get our heads around. That challenge is figuring out what information we must deliberately
from our results, following a new ruling from the European Court of Justice.
In the past we’ve restricted the removals we make from search to a very short list. It includes information deemed illegal by a court, such as defamation, pirated content (once we’re notified by the rights holder), malware, personal information such as bank details, child sexual abuse imagery and other things prohibited by local law (like material that glorifies Nazism in Germany).
We’ve taken this approach because, as article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:
“Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."
But the European Court found that people have the right to ask for information to be removed from search results that include their names if it is “
inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant, or excessive.
” In deciding what to remove, search engines must also have regard to the public interest. These are, of course, very vague and subjective tests. The court also decided that search engines don’t qualify for a “journalistic exception.” This means that
could have an article on its website about an individual that’s perfectly legal, but we might not legally be able to show links to it in our results when you search for that person’s name. It’s a bit like saying the book can stay in the library, it just cannot be included in the library’s card catalogue.
It’s for these reasons that we disagree with the ruling. That said, we obviously respect the court’s authority and are doing our very best to comply quickly and responsibly. It’s a huge task as we’ve had over 70,000 take-down requests covering 250,000 webpages since May. So we now have a team of people individually reviewing each application, in most cases with limited information and almost no context.
The examples we’ve seen so far highlight the difficult value judgments search engines and European society now face: former politicians wanting posts removed that criticize their policies in office; serious, violent criminals asking for articles about their crimes to be deleted; bad reviews for professionals like architects and teachers; comments that people have written themselves (and now regret). In each case, someone wants the information hidden, while others might argue it should be out in the open.
When it comes to determining what’s in the the public interest, we’re taking into account a number of factors. These include whether: the information relates to a politician, celebrity, or other public figure; if the material comes from a reputable news source, and how recent it is; whether it involves political speech; questions of professional conduct that might be relevant to consumers; the involvement of criminal convictions that are not yet “spent”; and if the information is being published by a government. But these will always be difficult and debatable judgments.
We’re also doing our best to be transparent about removals: for example, we’re informing websites when one of their pages has been removed. But we cannot be specific about why we have removed the information because that could violate the individual’s privacy rights under the court's decision.
Of course, only two months in, our process is still very much a work in progress. It’s why we incorrectly removed links to some articles last week (they have since been reinstated). But the good news is that the ongoing, active debate that’s happening will inform the development of our principles, policies and practices—in particular about how to balance one person’s right to privacy with another’s right to know.
That’s why we've also set up an
of experts, the final membership of which we're announcing today. These external experts from the worlds of academia, the media, data protection, civil society and the tech sector are serving as independent advisors to Google. The council will be asking for evidence and recommendations from different groups, and will hold public meetings this autumn across Europe to examine these issues more deeply. Its public report will include recommendations for particularly difficult removal requests (like criminal convictions); thoughts on the implications of the court’s decision for European Internet users, news publishers, search engines and others; and procedural steps that could improve accountability and transparency for websites and citizens.
The issues here at stake are important and difficult, but we’re committed to complying with the court’s decision. Indeed it's hard not to empathize with some of the requests we've seen—from the man who asked that we not show a news article saying he had been questioned in connection with a crime (he’s able to demonstrate that he was never charged) to the mother who requested that we remove news articles for her daughter’s name as she had been the victim of abuse. It’s a complex issue, with no easy answers. So a robust debate is both welcome and necessary, as, on this issue at least, no search engine has an instant or perfect answer.
Posted by David Drummond, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer
Google Cloud Platform predicts the World Cup (and so can you!)
July 11, 2014
In 2010, we had
Paul the Octopus
. This year, there’s
Google Cloud Platform
. For the past couple weeks, we’ve been using Cloud Platform to make predictions for the World Cup—analyzing data, building a statistical model and using machine learning to predict outcomes of each match since the group round. So far, we’ve gotten 13 out of 14 games correct. But with the finals ahead this weekend, we’re not only ready to make our prediction, but we’re doing something a little extra for you data geeks out there. We’re giving you the keys to our prediction model so you can make your own model and run your own predictions.
A little background
Using data from
covering multiple seasons of professional soccer leagues as well as the group stage of the World Cup, we were able to examine how activity in previous games predicted performance in subsequent ones. We combined this modeling with a power ranking of relative team strength developed by one of our engineers, as well as a metric to stand in for hometeam advantage based on fan enthusiasm and the number of fans who had traveled to Brazil. We used a whole bunch of Google Cloud Platform products to build this model, including
Google Cloud Dataflow
to import all the data and
to analyze it. So far, we’ve only been wrong on one match (we underestimated Germany when they faced France in the quarterfinals).
from the BigQuery team talk about the project in
this video from Google I/O
, or look at our
blog posts to learn more.
A narrow win for Germany in the final
Drumroll please… Though we think it’s going to be close, Germany has the edge: our model gives them a 55 percent chance of defeating Argentina. Both teams have had excellent tournaments so far, but the model favors Germany for a number of factors. Thus far in the tournament, they’ve had better passing in the attacking half of their field, a higher number of shots (64 vs. 61) and a higher number of goals scored (17 vs. 8).
(Oh, and we think Brazil has a tiny advantage in the third place game. They may have had a disappointing defeat on Tuesday, but their numbers still look good.)
Channel your inner data nerd
Now it’s your turn. We’ve put together a step-by-step guide (warning: code ahead) showing how we built our model and used it for predictions. You could try different statistical techniques or adding in your own data, like player salaries or team travel distance. Even though we’ve been right 92.86 percent of the time, we’re sure there’s room for improvement.
The model works for other hypothetical situations, and it includes data going back to the 2006 World Cup, three years of English Barclays Premier League, two seasons of Spanish La Liga, and two seasons of U.S. MLS. So, you could try modeling how the USA would have done against Argentina if their game against Belgium had gone differently, or pit this year’s German team against the unstoppable Spanish team of 2010. The world (er, dataset) is your oyster.
Ready to kick things off? Read our post on the
Cloud Platform blog
to learn more (or, if you’re familiar with all the technology, you can jump right over to
and start crunching numbers for yourself).
Posted by Benjamin Bechtolsheim, Product Marketing Manager, Google Cloud Platform
GoogleServe 2014: More opportunities to give back globally
July 10, 2014
In June, we celebrated the seventh annual GoogleServe, where employees come together and volunteer in our communities. This year, we doubled GoogleServe from one to two weeks so we could involve more volunteers and serve more community organizations. And it paid off—more than 12,000 Googlers from 70+ offices participated in 800+ projects, making this our biggest GoogleServe to date. Here’s a look at how we gave back to our communities this year:
Making tech more accessible
At our Mountain View headquarters and in Hyderabad, India, Googlers volunteered in three
events. Googlers participated in an Accessibility Code Sprint with
Benetech's Global Literacy Program
, a free mobile app for people with visual impairments and reading disabilities. A team of Googlers also worked with
to write descriptions for nearly 1,400 images in five STEM textbooks, making charts, graphs, and diagrams more accessible to blind and visually impaired students.
Helping veterans build their resumes
Googlers helped 475 veterans build their resumes as part of our “Help a Hero Get Hired” workshops in 14 cities: Ann Arbor, Atlanta, Austin, Boulder, Cambridge, Chicago, Kansas City, Moncks Corner, Mountain View, New York City, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. This was our fourth year partnering with
Student Veterans of America
to help veterans take the next steps in their careers.
Volunteering at local schools and community centers
In Oakland, volunteers canvassed the community with
Hack the Hood
Bay Area Impact Challenge winner
that trains youth from Oakland's low-income communities to build mobile-friendly websites. In San Francisco, Googlers visited the
, where they repaired picnic tables, cleaned toys and organized closets, and worked with the YMCA’s marketing specialists to redesign their corporate partnerships materials. In Kampala, Uganda, Googlers painted a nursery at
Sanyu Babies’ Home
, helping brighten the living space of the Home’s young residents.
Building houses and preparing meals
Googlers in Mexico City, Buenos Aires and Valparaiso, Chile, partnered with
to build houses for low-income families, while volunteers in Singapore prepared, cooked, and distributed 3,000 meals at
Willing Hearts Soup Kitchen
. In Milan and Mountain View, Googlers packaged 16,500 meals with
Stop Hunger Now
, a nonprofit that ships food to schools, orphanages and clinics in more than 70 countries.
Protecting the environment
A group of Googlers in Auckland, New Zealand, cleared three kilometers of coastline at
Tahuna Torea Nature Reserve
, and Ann Arbor Googlers collected trash as they paddled down the Huron River with the
Huron River Watershed Council
. And volunteers in San Jose, Calif., mulched, weeded and cleared leaves in the beautiful gardens of the
Guadalupe River Park Conservancy
Click the image below for photos from this year’s GoogleServe.
GoogleServe is part of our larger commitment to giving and volunteering throughout the year; employees have 20 hours of work time a year to volunteer with approved charitable organizations. In 2013, Googlers volunteered 130,000 hours with 1,390 nonprofits around the world. If you want to learn how you can give back to your community, visit
All for Good
Posted by Seth Marbin, on behalf of the GoogleServe & GooglersGive Teams
googlers and culture
Google Ventures invests in Europe
July 9, 2014
Wander through the excellent
in London, and you’ll see inventions that transformed history. Like
, one of the world’s first steam locomotives; or Charles Babbage’s
, a Victorian predecessor to the modern computer; or
, the wonder drug that revolutionized the treatment of disease. These marvels from the past still influence our lives today, and are tangible examples of how fearless exploration and entrepreneurship can literally change the world.
To help support the next generation of European entrepreneurs, today
is launching a new venture fund, with initial funding of $100 million. Our goal is simple: we want to invest in the best ideas from the best European entrepreneurs, and help them bring those ideas to life.
Google Ventures in 2009, we set out to be a very different type of venture fund. Startups need more than just capital to succeed: they also benefit from engineering support, design expertise, and guidance with recruiting, marketing and product management. Five years later, we’re working with
more than 250 portfolio companies
, tackling challenges across a host of industries. For example, the team at
is improving the way doctors and patients approach cancer care,
is developing a blood test for the early detection of Autism in children, and
Clean Power Finance
is making solar energy affordable for homeowners.
We believe Europe’s startup scene has enormous potential. We’ve seen compelling new companies emerge from places like London, Paris, Berlin, the Nordic region and beyond—SoundCloud, Spotify, Supercell and many others.
We can’t predict the kinds of inventions the Science Museum might showcase 10+ years from now, but we do know European startups will be essential to this future, and we can’t wait to see what they create.
Posted by Bill Maris, Managing Partner, Google Ventures
Meet the five Giving through Glass winners
July 9, 2014
We believe technology can help nonprofits make a difference more easily, and connect people to the causes they care about. It's with this in mind that we launched Giving through Glass—a contest for U.S. nonprofits to share ideas for how Google Glass can support the impact they're having every day.
Today, we’re announcing the five winners:
3000 Miles to a Cure
The Hearing and Speech Agency
Mark Morris Dance Group
Women's Audio Mission
. The winners were selected from more than 1,300 proposals, and each will take home a pair of Glass, a $25,000 grant, a trip to Google for training, and access to Glass developers who can help make their projects a reality.
Here’s what our winners are planning to do with Glass:
will give students in
a look through the eyes of Paralympic athletes as they train and compete, helping kids build empathy and learn to see ability where others too often see only disability. Bay Area-based
Women’s Audio Mission
will give instructors Glass to use in its music and media-based Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math training program for women and girls, creating a more immersive lab experience for students online and in person.
U.S. Paralympic Gold Medalist Josh Sweeney visits a Waller, Texas school
as part of a Classroom Champions program
Two programs focus on using Glass in therapeutic settings. The
Hearing and Speech Agency
will use Glass to pilot new ways to improve communication access for people who have speech language challenges, hearing loss and autism—and support those who teach and care for them. And the
Mark Morris Dance Group
will create a Glass app that will build on their award-winning
Dance for PD®
initiative to help people with Parkinson’s disease remember and trigger body movements in their daily lives.
Finally, Glass will head across the U.S. by bicycle to help raise money and increase awareness for brain cancer research. For the first time, supporters of participants in the
3000 Miles to a Cure Race
Across America will be able to see and experience it through a racer’s eyes and the racer will be alerted to every message of encouragement and donation supporters send.
Developers are already working with these inspiring groups, and next week these five nonprofits will descend on Google Glass' Base Camp in San Francisco for training, and to connect with their Google mentors. Stay tuned for updates on how the projects unfold!
Posted by Jacquelline Fuller, Director of Google.org
Build the best summer ever at Maker Camp 2014
July 7, 2014
This post comes to us from Dale Dougherty, founder and publisher of
. For the third straight year, Google and Make have come together to put on Maker Camp, a free, online summer camp for teens on Google+. Building on 2 million past participants, Maker Camp 2014 officially kicks off today at 11 a.m. PDT / 2 p.m. EDT today with a
featuring NASA and Buzz Aldrin. -
We’ve always believed that everyone, especially young people, should be able to feel the joy that comes from imagining and creating something that didn’t exist before.
Nine years ago, we hosted our very first Bay Area Maker Faire, an all-ages gathering of tech enthusiasts, crafters, hobbyists and artists. The event was partly inspired by the idea that the special creative energy produced by kids is even stronger when they’re brought together. Since that first get-together, it has grown globally with more than 100 events in places like Tokyo, Rome, Santiago and Oslo. Recently, a man in Atlanta told me that “making” changed his son’s life—by inspiring self-confidence through the joys of engineering, design and music. And just last weekend, a family drove eight hours to reach a Maker Faire because their 14-year-old son, Daniel, was so excited about meeting other makers.
But eight hours is a long way to drive to connect with other creative kids. So to make sure that inspiration and community are more accessible to young makers—no matter where they are—we teamed up with Google to create
, now back for its third summer. Through Google+, Maker Camp connects young makers from across the globe as they create, invent and build projects like
soda bottle rocket fireworks
LED shoe clips
(our version of arts and crafts). In addition to the daily projects, campers will join epic virtual Friday field trips to places like
Goddard Space Flight Center, Google [x] and
Camp is available to anyone with an Internet connection and an imagination—and kids who’d rather gather together around the digital campfire can visit one of Maker Camp’s
500 local “campsites”
hosted by libraries and community centers, in locations ranging from Australia to Jordan.
So roll up your virtual sleeping bag and come join us at Maker Camp this summer! To get started, simply follow
+Make on Google+
Posted by Dale Dougherty, CEO of Maker Media Inc.
DevArt: Art, made with code, opens at London’s Barbican
July 2, 2014
Though it can look like gobbledygook to the average person, code is the backbone of how we express ourselves, share and search online. We’ve always tried to push the limits of what code can do—from products like Chrome and Hangouts to tools that developers use to build incredible apps and games. Now, we’re showing off another side of code with
, a series of digital art installations made with code, at the Barbican’s
Digital Revolution Exhibition
(Photos - Andrew Meredith)
DevArt celebrates developers who use technology as their canvas and code as their paintbrush to make art that explores and challenges the creative and technical limits of code. With the Barbican, we commissioned three interactive artists to create pieces for Digital Revolution.
empowers anyone to be an artist with an online design tool that creates 3D digital sculptures that may be showcased in the exhibition.
Play the World
uses code to find musical notes from hundreds of live radio stations around the world. When a visitor plays the piano at the centre of the piece, each note is precisely matched to one of those radio sounds, and played back via 360-degree speakers to create a uniquely global piece of music. And duo
Varvara Guljajeva and Mar Canet
lets you whisper a wish, see your words projected in front of you, then transformed into a butterfly that (virtually) lands on your hand.
We also put out a
to undiscovered interactive artists for the opportunity to be commissioned by Google and Barbican, and exhibited alongside the DevArt artists. There were hundreds of entries, including a giant map (using Google Maps API) where
children can explore fantasy and reality
group-play haptic musical instrument
that visualizes sound using Android, and
maps of dreams
as they move through the brain (using Google+ APIs). In the end, the DevArt judges chose
Les Métamorphoses de Mr. Kalia
, by Cyril Diagne and Beatrice Lartigue, which allows you to use your body's movements to control a larger-than-life animated character, transforming basic movement into a powerful visual performance.
(Photos - Andrew Meredith)
We want to inspire a new generation of coders and artists to see what they can create with technology as their canvas. Soon, we’ll kick off our
DevArt Young Creators
program, a set of workshops hosted by DevArt artists for students aged 9-13 years who have never tried coding before. Each workshop will be developed into lesson plans in line with the U.K.’s new national computing curriculum, and distributed to educators by arts and technology organizations.
DevArt and the Digital Revolution exhibition will be at the Barbican in London until September 15, and after that will tour the world for up to five years. If you can’t make it in person, you can see all this
incredible art online
or watch our launch film to learn more:
Posted by Steve Vranakis, Executive Creative Director, Google Creative Lab
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