Archive for May, 2014

Austin is home to some of the best barbecue in the country, a killer live music scene, and an energy that can match any other city in the world. It’s no coincidence, then, that it’s also home to some of the most creative entrepreneurs out there, which is why we’re pleased to welcome Capital Factory, an Austin-based incubator and co-working space for startups, to the Google for Entrepreneurs Tech Hub Network. The city’s thriving startup community and deep bench of engineering talent, combined with its natural creativity and eclecticism, make it the perfect place to expand.

Capital Factory is the eighth space to join the Network, a group of partner organizations across the U.S. that does everything from hosting accelerator programs for talented developers to providing desks for entrepreneurs. Google for Entrepreneurs provides funding to all the hubs and give them access to mentorship opportunities and Google products.

In just over six months, the Tech Hub Network is already having a dramatic effect on entrepreneurs around North America. Seventy-one percent of startups say their hub is having a significant impact on their growth, and companies from the Network have raised more than $50 million and created 1,200 jobs since becoming members. Just last month, we hosted a Demo Day for these hubs, where 10 startups raised millions of dollars to help grow their businesses.

To give these entrepreneurs an even greater boost going forward, starting today anyone who works in one of the eight tech hubs or Google’s Campus London and Tel Aviv will be able to work for free from the other member spaces when traveling. This will give startups a home base when they’re on the road, and the chance to spread and exchange ideas from city to city.

Not too long ago, Google was just a small startup in a garage. Now that we’ve grown up a bit, we want to give others a place where they can work on their ideas, and feed off each other’s creativity and ingenuity. Capital Factory is no exception. So, get your boots on, Austin entrepreneurs—we can’t wait to see how your growing startup community plays its part in keeping Austin weird.

Posted by John Lyman, Head of Partnerships, Google for Entrepreneurs

Previewing a new Classroom

As a former high school math teacher, I know all too well that teachers spend a ton of valuable time doing things other than teaching—waking up early to grade quizzes, collecting and returning piles of paper assignments, and battling copy machine paper jams. But with today’s technology it doesn’t have to be this way. Many teachers and professors have found ways to use technology to be better educators and avoid busy work. We spent the past year working closely with many educators to understand the systems they use to simplify their workloads, so they can get back to doing what they love—teaching.

Today, in honor of Teacher Appreciation Day, we’re announcing a preview of Classroom, a new, free tool in the Google Apps for Education suite. It helps teachers create and organize assignments quickly, provide feedback efficiently, and communicate with their classes with ease. Classroom is based on the principle that educational tools should be simple and easy to use, and is designed to give teachers more time to teach and students more time to learn.

With Classroom, you’ll be able to:

Create and collect assignments: Classroom weaves together Google Docs, Drive and Gmail to help teachers create and collect assignments paperlessly. They can quickly see who has or hasn’t completed the work, and provide direct, real-time feedback to individual students.Improve class communications: Teachers can make announcements, ask questions and comment with students in real time—improving communication inside and outside of class.Stay organized: Classroom automatically creates Drive folders for each assignment and for each student. Students can easily see what’s due on their Assignments page.
We know that protecting your students’ privacy is critical. Like the rest of our Apps for Education services, Classroom contains no ads, never uses your content or student data for advertising purposes, and is free for schools.
Starting today, teachers and professors can apply for a preview of Classroom. Based on the requests we receive, we’ll be inviting a limited number of educators to try Classroom in about a month. By September, Classroom will be available to any school using Google Apps for Education. Since we want to make sure Classroom plays well with others, if you’re a developer or partner, sign up to learn more about integrating with Classroom.

We’ve been working with more than a dozen pilot schools and universities to try out Classroom and provide feedback—and we can’t thank them enough. We can’t wait to hear your feedback, and to work together to make Classroom even better.

Posted by Zach Yeskel, Product Manager, Classroom

From matters of the heart to matters off the court, join us on a trip to a galaxy far, far away for our look back at this week’s search trends.

Searching for romance
It’s the end of George as we know him. Saturday, word got out that longtime bachelor George Clooney was engaged to his girlfriend, Amal Alamuddin. Alamuddin is a respected human rights lawyer in Britain, but she’s not—or wasn’t—a household name, and many people turned to search to learn more about the woman who captured Clooney’s heart. While they were at it, they looked for information on actress Talia Balsam, who was married to George in the early 90’s (for those of you paying attention, that’s pre-Doug Ross!). In other celebrity couple news, Prince Harry and Cressida Bonas have reportedly broken up. So, if you’re disappointed that George is off the market, there’s still hope for women around the world wishing to marry a royal.

A historic week for the NBA
NBA commissioner Adam Silver made league history this week when he fined Clippers owner Donald Sterling and banned him from the league for recent comments. Millions of searches followed, and terms like [adam silver comments], [adam silver sterling], [adam sterling clippers] immediately climbed more than 1,000 percent.

The fetch is strong with this one
On Wednesday, we wore pink in celebration of the 10th anniversary of Tina Fey’s “Mean Girls.” The movie that gave us “fetch” was the subject of so many searches, quizzes (searches for [mean girls quiz] were up 350 percent) and retrospectives that even Cady Heron might have trouble adding them up. And though rumors of a [mean girls reunion] (up 850 percent) are apparently false, that can’t exactly be said of another movie on searchers’ minds this week: “Star Wars.” A photo revealing the cast of J.J. Abrams’ “Episode VII” showed original stars Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill and more seated alongside new faces like John Boyega, Daisy Ridley and Adam Driver. The new cast members were on the top of the search charts quicker than the Millennium Falcon could make the Kessel Run. (Fun fact: searches for [bill weasley] were also on the rise; “Episode VII”’s Domhnall Gleeson played him in the “Harry Potter” movies.).

Wordplay
Actress Emma Stone made headlines this week when she faced off against Late Night’s Jimmy Fallon in an epic lip syncing battle; searches for [emma stone fallon] climbed 2,200 percent. But while we can’t deny Emma’s spoken-word skills, we’ve got a soft spot for two other playful phrases that made the zeitgeist this week. On Saturday, searchers learned that [zonkey] was not an adjective for how you feel after a red-eye, but actually a rare zebra/donkey cross born last week in Mexico. And [it’s gonna be May] was trending Wednesday after Organizing for Action’s Barack Obama Facebook page used the meme-y caption on a photo showing POTUS with Justin Timberlake. Just to bring this week full circle, the Know Your Meme entry on “It’s gonna be May” includes a reference to… “Mean Girls.”

Happy Friday, and we’ll see you next week.


The Official Google Blog

From matters of the heart to matters off the court, join us on a trip to a galaxy far, far away for our look back at this week’s search trends.

Searching for romance
It’s the end of George as we know him. Saturday, word got out that longtime bachelor George Clooney was engaged to his girlfriend, Amal Alamuddin. Alamuddin is a respected human rights lawyer in Britain, but she’s not—or wasn’t—a household name, and many people turned to search to learn more about the woman who captured Clooney’s heart. While they were at it, they looked for information on actress Talia Balsam, who was married to George in the early 90’s (for those of you paying attention, that’s pre-Doug Ross!). In other celebrity couple news, Prince Harry and Cressida Bonas have reportedly broken up. So, if you’re disappointed that George is off the market, there’s still hope for women around the world wishing to marry a royal.

A historic week for the NBA
NBA commissioner Adam Silver made league history this week when he fined Clippers owner Donald Sterling and banned him from the league for recent comments. Millions of searches followed, and terms like [adam silver comments], [adam silver sterling], [adam sterling clippers] immediately climbed more than 1,000 percent.

The fetch is strong with this one
On Wednesday, we wore pink in celebration of the 10th anniversary of Tina Fey’s “Mean Girls.” The movie that gave us “fetch” was the subject of so many searches, quizzes (searches for [mean girls quiz] were up 350 percent) and retrospectives that even Cady Heron might have trouble adding them up. And though rumors of a [mean girls reunion] (up 850 percent) are apparently false, that can’t exactly be said of another movie on searchers’ minds this week: “Star Wars.” A photo revealing the cast of J.J. Abrams’ “Episode VII” showed original stars Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill and more seated alongside new faces like John Boyega, Daisy Ridley and Adam Driver. The new cast members were on the top of the search charts quicker than the Millennium Falcon could make the Kessel Run. (Fun fact: searches for [bill weasley] were also on the rise; “Episode VII”’s Domhnall Gleeson played him in the “Harry Potter” movies.).
Wordplay
Actress Emma Stone made headlines this week when she faced off against Late Night’s Jimmy Fallon in an epic lip syncing battle; searches for [emma stone fallon] climbed 2,200 percent. But while we can’t deny Emma’s spoken-word skills, we’ve got a soft spot for two other playful phrases that made the zeitgeist this week. On Saturday, searchers learned that [zonkey] was not an adjective for how you feel after a red-eye, but actually a rare zebra/donkey cross born last week in Mexico. And [it’s gonna be May] was trending Wednesday after Organizing for Action’s Barack Obama Facebook page used the meme-y caption on a photo showing POTUS with Justin Timberlake. Just to bring this week full circle, the Know Your Meme entry on “It’s gonna be May” includes a reference to… “Mean Girls.”

Happy Friday, and we’ll see you next week.

Posted by Emily Wood, Google Blog Editor, who searched this week for [derby day history] and [andre movie]

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