Tag Archives: G Suite

Cloud Covered: 6 things you might have missed from Google Cloud last year

What was new with Google Cloud in 2018? Well, it depends on what particular cloud technology you’re interested in. There was plenty of news on the AI and machine learning front, along with developments on a variety of enterprise cloud components. The open cloud community continued to be a thriving place to collaborate, and Google Cloud user productivity and efficiency grew, too.

These popular stories from last year illustrate some of what you can do with Google Cloud technology.

  1. Machine and deep learning made leaps. On the hardware front, special chips designed for high performance, called Cloud TPUs, are now broadly available to speed up machine learning tasks. And we partnered with NASA’s Frontier Development Lab to use ML to build simulations and algorithms to answer one big question: Is there life on other planets?
  2. Organizations are starting to extract more value from their data. Tools like BigQuery and the Ethereum digital currency dataset, which we recently made available to everyone, help businesses find insights from their data. And The New York Times is digitizing its huge photo archive, along with all its associated data, using Google Cloud storage and database technology.
  3. There’s a new way to keep your information secure. The Titan Security Key arrived in the Google Store in 2018. Use these security keys to add two-factor verification to your Google Accounts and other services. They’re designed to defend against attacks like phishing that steal user credentials.
  4. The cloud opened the door to creating all kinds of applications and projects. For game developers, the OpenMatch open source project cuts down on development time for building multiplayer games with its matchmaking framework. And a novelist is using the new Cloud Speech-to-Text API to add visuals to poetry readings.
  5. Productivity gains with cloud came in all shapes and sizes. Check out the new developer hub for G Suite, providinglots of pro tips for developers to create, manage, and track their projects, including this tip on automatically adding a schedule from Google Sheets into Calendar.
  6. You can build on Google Cloud Platform (GCP) even more easily. A new type of containers called gVisor arrived to give developersmore options when building applications. Plus, we brought the infrastructure that powers Google Search to developers with Cloud Source Repositories for easier code search. And the Cloud Services Platform arrived in 2018—this integrated family of cloud services lets you build an end-to-end cloud while removing manual tasks from the daily workload.  

For even more of what was popular last year in Google Cloud, take a look at the top Google Cloud Platform stories of 2018. And if one of your goals this year is to start using cloud more, mark your calendar to attend Google Cloud Next ’19.

Stay organized in 2019 with new features in Classroom

A new calendar year brings an opportunity for a fresh start. One resolution we often hear instructors make is that they hope to keep their classrooms (both physical and virtual!) organized and clean. While we can’t help with those lockers and backpacks, we can help teachers online. So to start the year off on the right foot, we’re introducing updates to help you stay organized and revealing a fresh new look for the Classroom you know and love. Check out our brand new videobelow for a quick look inside Google Classroom.

Drag and drop on the Classwork page

Last fall, we rolled out the new Classwork page, where instructors can stay organized and map out their classes. But, we know that teachers organize their classes in distinct ways and need additional flexibility in their classroom tools.

So now, you candrag and dropentire topics and individual Classwork items, rearranging them easily on the page. You can drag an entire topic to a specific location on the Classwork page, or drag individual items within—and in between—topics. This functionality launched last year on mobile, and now it’s time for it to hit the web.

Drag and drop on the Classwork page

A fresh new look for Classroom

Starting today, you’ll also see that Classroom has a fresh new look and feel, first on the web, and soon in the Classroom mobile apps. Back in 2014,  we introduced Google’s new material theme to have more consistency across Google products and platforms.  Among the changes, you’ll see a more intuitive design flow—plus a new approach to shape, color, iconography and typography, on both the web and the mobile app. We’re also making the class code easier to access and project so students can easily find and join. And finally, we’re introducing 78 new themes with custom illustrations, ranging from history to math to hair dressing to photography. Now, you can customize your Classroom more than ever before.

Material Design in Classroom

New tools, new trainings

With new tools and changes comes the need for more support. In the Teacher Center, you’ll find updated videos in our First Day of Classroom trainings with the new design and features we rolled out in 2018. While we’re at it, we built a new and improved Help Center, combined with our Community and product forum.

New themes in Google Classroom

We’re always listening to ways teachers customize and personalize Google Classroom, so follow along on Twitter and Facebook and share your ideas. We’re also getting ready for BETT in London—come visit us at stand C230. From all of us at Google for Education, we wish you a happy and organized 2019!

Share files more easily with non-Google accounts in Drive Beta

Soon, people without Google accounts will be able to view, comment, suggest edits to, and directly edit Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides files.

Organizations often work on documents with external vendors, partners, contractors, and customers. When these partners don't have Google accounts, it is a significant barrier for collaboration.

We are introducing a beta for an easy pincode identity verification process that will enable G Suite users to invite non-G Suite users to collaborate on files as visitors, using PINs (Personal Identification Numbers). Below is an example of how it works:

File owners and admins are in full control of sharing 

File owners can view all the detailed activity on their files and see where it originated, and revoke access from the Drive sharing dialog at any time. Admins can manage all external sharing and audit usage. For more information on sharing settings, check out this Help Center article.

Apply to join Pincode Sharing in Drive Beta 

Pincode Sharing in Drive is launching initially in beta. If you're an admin, see more details, review the eligibility requirements, and apply to join the beta.

Launch Details 
Beta is available to all G Suite editions

Admins and end users

Admin action suggested/FYI

More Information 
Help Center: Set Drive users' sharing permission
Join the beta

Launch release calendar
Launch detail categories
Get these product update alerts by email
Subscribe to the RSS feed of these updates

Better information on spam messages in Email Log Search

As a G Suite admin, you can now get more detailed and helpful information in the Admin console about emails that have been marked as spam. The Email Search Log tool will now show the reason an email was flagged as spam, as well as other warnings users may see about suspicious emails.

This new information will help you understand the steps that our spam classification system takes to protect end-users and will assist in managing email traffic. To access the tool, from the Admin console Home page, go to Reports > Audit > Email log search. See our Help Center to get more details on the Email Log Search tool.

Digging deeper into spam 

When using the Email Log Search to locate spam, you’ll now receive detailed data about the spam and annotations about the messages, including:
  • The reason an email was or was not marked as spam 
  • When anomaly banners are triggered by suspicious attachments or a phishing attack 

See the Help Center to learn how you, as an admin, can download Email Log Search results to a CSV file or open them in Google Sheets for easy viewing.

Launch Details
Release track:
Launching to both Rapid Release and Scheduled Release

Available to all G Suite editions

Rollout pace:
Full rollout (1–3 days for feature visibility)

Admins and end users

Admin action suggested/FYI

More Information
Help Center: Interpret Email Log Search results

Launch release calendar
Launch detail categories
Get these product update alerts by email
Subscribe to the RSS feed of these updates

More ways to collaborate using Box for G Suite

 We’re making Box for G Suite available for all G Suite customers, bringing Google's rich content creation and editing experiences directly into Box so that companies can stay productive and accelerate their work.

Admins can enable the integration from within the Box Admin Console.

Check out this blog post and the Box Community for more information.

Launch Details

Available to all G Suite editions

Rollout pace: 
Gradual rollout to all Box users through mid-January 2019

All end users

Admin action suggested/FYI

More Information 
Box Community
G Suite blog post

Launch release calendar
Launch detail categories
Get these product update alerts by email
Subscribe to the RSS feed of these updates

ICYMI in November: here’s what happened in G Suite

Sorry we missed you these past two months. Next Tokyo and London were at the top of our to-dos. Check out the keynotes to catch the highlights.

In case you’re curious, we improved the G Suite Developer hub this past month to make it easier for developers to track projects from one place. We also launched a way for you to integrate content from third-party apps directly into your email drafts. With Compose Actions in Gmail, you can do things like add attachments from other apps into emails.

Subhead 1 ICYMI G Suite

Now you can make a Google Doc even faster. Type in “doc.new,” “docs.new” or “document.new” into your web browser and a new Google Doc will appear. Less clicks!

Subhead 2 ICYMI G Suite

→With one click, you can get others to join your meeting as you’re hosting it. Click “add people” at the top of your participant list in Hangouts Meet—up to 100 people can join now. Bring your friends!

Hangouts Meet.png

→ Admins can make even stricter password requirements for users. Check it out.

→ Formatting presentations takes time, but we’re making it even easier in Slides. Now, you can double-click the tool icon to enter “persistent” mode to make changes all at once.

Formatting presentations.png

→ You might’ve noticed a new icon at the top of your Google Docs, Sheets, Slides or Drawings. Use the squiggly-line icon to access the activity dashboard—a great place to see stats or adjust privacy settings in documents.

activity dashboard.png

Check out the full recap of product updates in November. See you next month.

Sync Google Drive files to apps using the Drive REST API, bidding farewell to the Drive Android API

Posted by Remy Burger, Product Manager, Google Drive

If you're looking to make Google Drive files accessible from within your application, chances are you might use the Google Drive REST API or the Google Drive Android API to help. Both tools allow users to download or upload files from Drive from inside of another application.

Starting today, we're simplifying options for developers by retiring the Drive Android API. We will focus solely on expanding functionality for the Drive REST API.

If you're new to the Drive REST API, it offers all of the same functionality as the Drive Android API, including ways to:

If you use the Google Drive Android API, you will need to migrate your existing applications to other services prior to December 6, 2019, when all calls to the API and any features in your applications that depend on it will be shut down. Note: if you've been using the Drive Android API for its offline sync capability, you can continue to provide an offline-first model by using a SyncAdapter with the Drive REST API.

What to do if you currently use the Google Drive Android API

We want to make it easy for you to migrate your applications to use the Drive REST API. To get started, reference this migration guide which details replacements for each of the major services fulfilled by the Drive Android API. Additionally, check out this sample app, which demonstrates each of these proposed replacements. If you have any issues, check out the google-drive-sdk tag on StackOverflow.

Get quizzing with locked mode, and grade away with Classroom

Earlier this year, we announced locked mode—a new way to ensure students are distraction-free when taking Quizzes in Google Forms. We’ve also been working on a better grading experience in Classroom. We’re now opening up locked mode and Gradebook via a beta program, so sign up to express interest.

Show what you know with locked mode

For a lot of teachers, a day in the life might look like this: teach innovatively and creatively, quiz without distractions, grade efficiently, give thoughtful and constructive feedback, repeat. Teachers assess knowledge and check for understanding every single day, and many use Quizzes in Google Forms to do just that. But we’ve heard feedback from teachers that they want to ensure their students aren’t navigating to other browser tabs while taking quizzes. Available only on managed Chromebooks, locked mode prevents students from navigating away from the Quiz in their Chrome browser until they submit their answers. Teachers can enable locked mode with a simple checkbox in Google Forms, giving them full control over assessments.

Built-in Chrome OS accessibility tools such as ChromeVox, select-to-speak and visual aids— including high contrast mode and magnifiers—are all available when using locked mode. And to support students who use Chrome extensions during test taking, teachers can find out which extensions are available with locked mode. Introducing new tools means extra support: we’ve created a step-by-step guidebrief animated tutorial, and new Help Center instructions for Instructional Coaches, PD partners, and teachers to make learning how to use locked mode even easier. Don’t yet have Chromebooks and want to learn more? Get in touch.

To streamline the assignment process, we’ve also added the ability for all Classroom users to create a Quiz directly from Classroom. Instead of creating quizzes in a separate browser, you can create a quiz and assign it directly to your class, or multiple classes.

Locked mode in Quizzes in Google Forms

Better grading in Classroom

Earlier this year, we introduced new grading tools and a comment bank for richer, better feedback. Today, we’re continuing to strengthen the grading process in Classroom with a beta for a new Gradebook to better enable teachers to keep their assignments and grades in one place, and keep this important task more organized. Here are a few things you can do with the new Gradebook:

  • View grades in one place:A new Grades page lets you can view a grid of submissions across assignments to easily enter grades, saving time and providing a holistic picture of a student’s progress.

  • Average grades:In the gradebook grid, you can view average grades per assignment and per student, and see the overall performance in your class. You can share progress with students, so they can track their grades and know where they need to improve.

  • Grade categories & settings:You can select how to calculate grades (weighted average or total points-based), add grade categories to classwork, and choose whether you’d like students to see their average grades. Access these from the Settings page.

Gradebook in Classroom

Sign up for the locked mode and Gradebook betas today

Locked mode is only available on managed Chromebooks, and you’ll need to make sure your Chromebooks are running operating system 68 or higher. We’ll be slowly phasing the rollout for locked mode and Gradebook. If you’re interested in the new features, all teachers and administrators can express interest in either of the betas.

We’d love to hear all of the ways you’re using locked mode in Quizzes and improving your grading experience during the beta period, so please send us feedback using the “send feedback” button.

Source: Google Chrome

Migrating G Suite extensions from Chrome Web Store to G Suite Marketplace

Originally posted on the Google Cloud Blog by Greg Brosman, Product Manager, G Suite Marketplace

Starting today, we're making it possible for you to access all of your favorite G Suite extensions in one place by bringing add-ons and web apps from the Chrome Web Store into the G Suite Marketplace.

If you're not familiar with the G Suite Marketplace, it's the app store for G Suite. Whether you want to boost your productivity, take control of your calendar or do more from within your inbox, you can browse more than a thousand options to customize how you work in G Suite. IT admins also have the ability to manage access and controls of apps from within the G Suite Marketplace—like whitelisting app access for users or installing an app for an entire domain (read more about best practices here). If you're an admin, you can access the marketplace from within the Admin console (Go to Tools > G Suite Marketplace).

How to migrate existing apps if you're a developer

Going forward, new G Suite extensions will be listed only on the G Suite Marketplace to make it easier for you to manage your listings. This includes all G Suite apps with add-ons, like Docs, Sheets and Drive. If you have existing apps listed on the Chrome Web Store, you'll have 90 days to migrate them. Here are specific instructions for editor add-ons, Drive v3 apps, and Drive v2 apps to get that process started. Ratings and reviews will be included in the migration, and existing users will continue to be able to use their apps.

We look forward to seeing your apps on G Suite Marketplace!

Tools that aim to reach all types of learners, wherever they are

Editor’s note: Before joining Google’s Education team, Morgan Weisman was a kindergarten teacher. Today she is sharing how one of her students inspired her to help build products that aim to meet the needs of all types of learners.

The first time I met six-year-old Jeremiah, he clung to his mom’s leg as he peeked into my kindergarten classroom. Soon he came alive as he talked about his favorite superhero: Spiderman. He ran around the colorful classroom, touched everything in sight and chatted aimlessly. However, when he realized my attention had shifted to his mom, he threw himself on the floor in a tantrum. That’s when his mom told me that they suspected he had autism, but were hopeful that the routine of school would help him focus.

This began a year long journey of giving Jeremiah the educational support he needed, while also teaching 24 other students with 24 different learning styles. Seventy-two percent of classrooms have special education students, and teachers have to work to keep them all engaged and invested in school. For me,  I leveraged technology to create differentiated lessons and support each student, especially Jeremiah.

Jeremiah lit up when he had a computer in front of him and headphones on. He could listen, engage and learn without distractions. We had him fitted for glasses, and he learned how to use the screen magnifier to make the words pop on his screen. He learned sight words, numbers and simple addition through songs and videos. Best of all, his social skills developed as he learned to share and take turns with devices.

As I learned what worked for Jeremiah, I started using the same strategies with other students. As my instructional coach used to tell me: “What works for kids with special needs works for everyone. The strategies that work, just work.”

Since joining Google, I’ve seen even more ways that educators use technology to help students succeed. We strive to support teachers, and one of the ways we are doing that is through built-in accessibility features in our products that aim to support the diverse needs of all students.

Morgan's kindergarten classroom on graduation day

My students on kindergarten graduation day... all decked out in gear from my alma mater, our class' theme.

The ABC’s of Chromebook accessibility

Accessibility settings are built in to all Chromebooks, and more are available through Chrome extensions and apps. No need to change settings when you switch devices because they sync to each student by default. Here are a few useful accessibility settings to get you started:

  • Visual aids: Increase the size of browser content by pressing Ctrl + Plus to increase, Ctrl + Minus to decrease, Ctrl + 0 to reset. The rest of the desktop is unaffected. You can enable high contrast mode by pressing Ctrl + Search button + H on the Chromebook keyboard. Adjust your font face and size, and install Chrome extensions for custom color support.

  • Mono Audio:For users who have limited hearing in one ear, there's a Mono Audio option to play the same sound through both speakers. Turn this feature on in Accessibility settings.

  • Spoken feedback: For users who need synthesized speech on occasion, we offer Select-to-speak. When enabled, press and hold the Search key, then click or drag to select content to be read aloud, and press Ctrl to silence. Change the word-by-word highlight color in Select-to-speak settings. We also have the ChromeVox screen reader that reads all text aloud, a free, browser-based screen reader that users can access from any device and built directly for ChromeOS.

  • Acapela text-to-speech voices: Now you can purchase and use more than 100 Acapela voices to read aloud text in 30+ languages on Chromebooks, including a variety of childrens’ voices.

ChromeOS Accessibility Features

The 123’s of G Suite Accessibility

G Suite is a set of tools that help students and teachers collaborate in real time and give personalized feedback. It’s also paperless and accessible from anywhere. Built into our G Suite tools are many accessibility features:

  • Slides: Turn on closed captions in Slides to support students who are deaf, hard-of-hearing or ENL. Simply use  Ctrl + Shift + c in ChromeOS/Windows or⌘ + Shift + c in Mac.

  • Voice typing, editing and formatting: Use the mic and enable the feature to use voice typing in Docs and Slides to write and edit without a keyboard.

  • Visual aids:Enable high contrast themes in Gmail and browsing, and use powerful keyboard shortcuts for those who can’t or don’t want to use a mouse.

  • Collaboration:G Suite works on all different platforms including Windows, Android, iOS devices and even multiple devices at one time. You can all be on different devices and still collaborate in real time.

  • Braille: Use a Braille display to read and edit Docs, Sheets, Slides and Drawings.

  • Screen reader & magnifier:Turn on the features in accessibility settings to zoom in or use the screen reader in Docs, Calendar, Sites, Classroom and even in other browsers.

Braille in Docs Editors

What else is new?

We’re supporting teachers through our own tools as well as strong partnerships with organizations who share our mission. One such organization is Don Johnston, a company that builds tools for people with all types of learning styles and abilities. We’re excited to announce them as a Google for Education Premier Technology Partner, with new integrations using our Drive API, Classroom API and Google single sign-on. Try out their core products in Chrome, Co:Writer, for word prediction, translation, and speech recognition, Snap&Read for screen reading, & their newest product, automatic quiz generator Quizbot with Google Forms. See how one Indiana teacher uses Chromebooks and Don Johnston tools to improve reading independence in her classroom.


Ready to make your teaching more accessible for all learners?

We have many resources to find out what’s new, and how to turn on and use features included in our Chrome browser, Chromebook settings, and G Suite products:

At Google for Education, we're passionate about building tools that make teaching and learning better for everyone. We love hearing stories of how technology is changing students’ lives, so please share ways that you’re using accessibility tools to support all types of learners.

Source: Google Chrome