Posts Tagged Google

The Google Research Tool in Google docs

I noticed this  yesterday when I was doing a quick document on Google Docs to record what had happened in a meeting, whoooah “what is that happening on my sidebar” I thought.  Turns out I had stumbled upon the newest feature in the Google Docs department.  The Google Research Tool.  They’ve been blogging about it over on the Bright Ideas blog too!  Here is how it works (thanks Bright Ideas, love your work).

This has lots of interesting implications for our students as it pushes keyword searches straight into their documents.  Clever stuff.  As many schools are using to Google as an entire school platform I think it needs lots of critical and information literacy to get students sifting as they create documents.

Image representing Google Docs as depicted in ...

Image via CrunchBase

If you still aren’t using Google Docs for documents which need more than one person to work on them (or even for all your wordprocessing) then you are missing out on one of the best tools on the internet.  So many ways they are useful, so many hours saved.  I now have most of my templates on there from the library timetable master to policy documents which get changed every year.

Watch the Video here to see the latest tricks.

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Getting to grips with Google Reader

I know that many many readers of this blog will use Google Reader every day, but many of the teaching staff I talk to, and librarians too for that matter, wonder at the ability of some of us to munch through so many blogs, gleaning good stuff and sharing it around.  Google Reader makes it easy.

The RSS feed is the key to all this blog reading goodness.

Sue Waters has written a really great explanation of how to manage your blog reading life using RSS feeds and Google Reader. If you struggle to keep up with online reading, or you are looking for a clear introduction to using Google Reader then her article is certain to help you.

You will find it here.  You will also find all kinds of good things on the blog, it is specifically for people using Edublogs but even though I don’t use that platform I find lots of really good things on The Edublogger.

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How good are you at searching?

Over on the Blue Skunk blog a couple of days ago an interesting discussion was taking place.  Where do professionals learn search skills?  We are quick to criticise the search skills of the students (and staff) we work with but how good are we ourselves?

Google is always the quick answer, but is it the best answer?  Read the comments on the post and see what you think.  There are also links on there to some excellent Google tools which you may be familiar with, but if you aren’t then go try them.  The include:

Noodletools Choose the best search engine for your information needs and

Google Tutorials which have been mentioned on this blog before.

My personal fave Let me Google that for you

Got good ideas to contribute from a local perspective?  Add them to the comments below.

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Google this way

I’ve been reading this post on Mindshift.  It is an interview with Daniel Russell, a “search anthropologist” who is detailed to look after your search quality and best of all he is a User Happiness expert.  It lead me to search for him and I found lots of stuff but loved the presentation below best.  You can watch him give a presentation if you want to and find it here.  It is a keynote which is funny, clever and engaging and his comments on Information Overload, Infowhelm anyone?   Find out what the future of Google is, and when listening know that Google+ was minutes away when the talk was given.  His stats might frighten you a little bit.  Really, they can index a tweet in Google in 4 seconds?

Google have plenty of resources to help the search challenged.  Have a look at the links below.

Posters you can print out with search help, strategies and more.  I have these on the walls above the bank of computers in my library for the students to ignore!

Basic Search Help

Learn some of the features other than search

The Google Guide – a pdf that takes a bit to load because it is big (148 pages)

Google for Educators – all kinds of Google Goodness within here including the following …

Take a look at Start Your Engines the first part of a tutorial in google features.  Maybe be useful for teaching students and teachers as well.

You should probably remember that Google is busy having a revamp, lots of it’s bits and pieces have recently been modified, deleted and phased out.  Google Labs is on the way out, Timeline and Wonderwheel are gone and plenty more are heading out the door.

More from the Australian Listserv today – Google Search Evangalism

And I know that you all know that Google owns YouTube and here is the Google Channel on YouTube.


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A Google a day

Well this is fun.  Just had a little play with this and found it a great way of stretching your brain and testing your search skills.  A Google a day gives you new challenges every day.  It works like this:  They ask a question, you find the answer, they tell you if you are right or wrong, you try again, or if you got it right you get a new question.  Repeat at will.

Great stuff for students, great for the 5 mins at the end of the period when you need a filler, great as a challenge for all sorts of people, including me.  And you can embed it on your blog.   Love it.

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Google image sorting

Google has a new feature for sorting images while searching for specific images.  Watch the video below and you will get the picture.

Came to me via Core Education’s Facebook Page

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