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Preview: The Official Google Blog

The Official Google Blog

Insights from Googlers into our products, technology, and the Google culture.

Last Build Date: Wed, 26 Oct 2016 16:00:00 +0000


Jamboard — the whiteboard, reimagined for collaboration in the cloudJamboard — the whiteboard, reimagined for collaboration in the cloudProduct Manager, G Suite

Wed, 26 Oct 2016 16:00:00 +0000

Bringing the right team together for a meeting or brainstorm can take an idea from being good to great. When we tap into ideas from teams across the globe, our work becomes more collaborative and productive. It doesn’t feel like...well, work.At Google, we’ve set out to redefine meetings. So today, we’re introducing Jamboard — a collaborative, digital whiteboard that makes it easy for your team to share ideas in real-time and create without boundaries. We’re moving the whiteboard to the cloud. Your team’s collaborative, cloud-first whiteboardJamboard raises the bar on collaborative creativity, bringing the same real-time collaboration found in G Suite, combined with the best of the web, to your team’s brainstorms and meetings. You can work with teammates from across the world on other Jamboards or remotely use the smartphone or tablet companion app. Jamboard makes it easy to enrich your brainstorm with the power of Google Search and your team’s work in G Suite. Grab images and content from the web and bring them straight into your “jam.” Pull in work from Docs, Sheets and Slides, or add photos stored in Drive. To capture your ideas clearly, Jamboard is packed with tools like sticky notes and stencils as well as intelligent features like handwriting and shape recognition. It’s a hassle when you use a whiteboard, reach the end of your meeting and have to quickly scramble to snap a picture of your work. How many times have you scribbled “do not erase” above your idea? Jamboard lets you take your work with you. When you “jam” with your colleagues, it lives in the cloud in Google Drive, so you can easily share what you’ve created or come back to iterate at anytime. Your brainstorm doesn’t have to end when the meeting does. Designed for precision and easeJamboard is intelligently designed to speed up collaboration among your teams with a 55-inch 4k display that features a best-in-class touch response time. Combine this with a built-in HD camera, speakers and Wi-Fi, and you’re set up to collaborate and broadcast your work globally with Hangouts. Jamboard’s touchscreen was built for precision drawing. It automatically recognizes the difference between using the stylus to sketch or the eraser to start over, and neither require batteries or pairing. Jamboard can also sense when you’re using your finger to wipe work off of the screen, just like a classic whiteboard (except you won’t get ink on your hand). The intuitive, single-cable setup makes it easy to start creating quickly with Jamboard — just wheel it in, turn it on and start brainstorming.Time to jam We want to help teams get back to the heart of what they love to do: create new ideas. That’s why we’ve worked closely with G Suite customers like Instrument, Netflix, and Spotify to refine the blend of hardware and software that drives Jamboard. We're also partnering with BenQ to tap into its network of channels and resellers to help bring Jamboard to market.While touch displays have traditionally been expensive, at under $6,000 USD, Jamboard is a competitively-priced way to transform your team’s meetings and will be available for purchase in 2017. As we “jam” on the final product details, we're ready to partner with a broader set of G Suite customers to perfect Jamboard through an Early Adopter Program. If you're interested, submit the form on the Jamboard website to receive more information about eligibility.[...]The newest addition to G Suite, Jamboard is a collaborative, digital whiteboard that makes it easy for your team to share ideas and create without boundaries.

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Helping universities build what’s next with Google Cloud PlatformHelping universities build what’s next with Google Cloud PlatformDirector of Education

Tue, 25 Oct 2016 13:00:00 +0000

Google Cloud Platform (GCP) now serves over one billion end-users through our customers’ products and services. And today I’m happy to say that we’re investing even more resources to bring these tools to higher education. We’re excited to offer universities the same powerful infrastructure, data analytics and machine learning that we use to drive innovation and performance.We believe that universities can benefit from Google Cloud Platform in three areas: research, infrastructure and teaching. In research, GCP big data and machine learning tools can power experiments and analyses that weren’t even possible just a year ago. GCP frees academic IT organizations from the overhead of managing infrastructure, provisioning servers and configuring networks, and in teaching we enable professors to teach modern cloud computing subjects on Google Cloud Platform.Supporting university research and infrastructure with Internet2We’re committed to working closely with users to understand their needs. With the aim of exploring opportunities for the cloud with universities, Google is pleased to announce that it has joined Internet2, a US-based not-for-profit, member-driven technology and advanced networking consortium dedicated to advancing new innovations and scientific discoveries for the next generation of research and education.Founded in 1996, Internet2 provides a collaborative environment for U.S. research and education organizations to solve shared technology challenges, and to develop innovative solutions in support of their educational, research and community service missions. Internet2 operates a research and education network and serves more than 317 U.S. universities, 70 government agencies, 42 regional and state education networks, 80 leading corporations and more than 65 national research and education networking from over 100 countries.Internet2 and Google will work with universities across the United States to explore how GCP can better serve higher education. We hope to develop projects that address the higher education community’s needs around big data and machine learning technologies that can be met by Google’s cloud tools. Powering computer science teachingIn June we announced Google Cloud Platform Education Grants, and I'm pleased to share that hundreds of courses have been awarded free credits for their students. GCP is helping universities level the playing field, providing students with equal access to best-in-class compute resources. For example, at California State University, San Bernadino, Professor Vasilia’s students are learning about networking and cybersecurity by using GCP’s API’s to program database information. Students are learning to display geolocation signal strength heatmap information for internet access points, set up virtual private networks in the cloud, test firewall rules, set up network segments and read machine data between networks using GCP’s virtual network infrastructure. Fall classes are just underway, and we can’t wait to tell you more about what students learn and create with GCP tools. Professors teaching courses in computer science and related fields at universities in the US can still apply for grants for classes this year or next year.Connecting with universities at EDUCAUSEThis week we’ll connect with hundreds of universities at the annual EDUCAUSE conference. If you'll be at the conference in Anaheim, visit us at booth #1800. There,  you can see demos of GCP, G Suite for Education (formerly known as Google Apps for Education), Chromebooks, Chrome digital signage, student and faculty programs and the latest in virtual reality. You can also join us for “Machine Learning 101” Wednesday 2:30-3:20pm PT in Room 210D. Learn more from universities who are benefiting from Google technology by attending our session “The Impact of Collaborative Tools - Lessons from Universities Using [...]

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Field Trips to our National ParksField Trips to our National ParksField Trip Days Program Manager Cultural Activations and Partnerships

Mon, 24 Oct 2016 18:30:00 +0000

The national parks are our shared cultural inheritance, passed on from generation to generation for all Americans to enjoy. We believe everyone should have access to these national treasures, which is why we’ve worked to bring the National Parks online with Google Maps, make National Park Service historical artifacts accessible via Google Arts & Culture and created a National Parks immersive documentary. Today we’re also announcing our sponsorship of the National Park Foundation’s Open Outdoors for Kids Initiative, providing funding to enable roughly 1,700 children  to attend immersive education programming at national parks across the country - many experiencing a national park for the first time. Through our Field Trip Days program, we’ve sent more than 150,000 under-resourced students to museums, science centers, planetariums, and aquariums. We’ve made it a priority to help students discover the world using technology like Google Expeditions that enable classrooms to travel to places a school bus can’t reach via virtual reality. And through this sponsorship, we take an additional step forward in supporting outdoor education by helping students experience parks in person across the country. We’re proud to support the National Park Service, especially during this centennial anniversary year and give students the opportunity to explore their cultural inheritance online and in person. The sponsorship was announced by Secretary Sally Jewell of the Department of Interior over the weekend at a “Campout” on the Google Kirkland campus, hosted in partnership with the  Department of Interior as part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative and the YMCA. The campout was complete with s’mores and outdoor educational programing from the Woodland Park Zoo, Pacific Science Center, National Park Service, Fish & Wildlife Service, REI and former grantee NatureBridge, who will help us to facilitate many of the Field Trip Days across the country. We hope that programs like these inspire more students to visit our parks in the future and protect them for years to come.[...]Our latest effort to provide field trips to National Parks for students from underserved communities in partnership with the Open Outdoors for Kids initiative.

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Android Pay partners with Visa and Mastercard to bring simple checkout to more places onlineAndroid Pay partners with Visa and Mastercard to bring simple checkout to more places onlineGlobal Head of Payment Products

Mon, 24 Oct 2016 16:00:00 +0000

Today, Google announces strategic partnerships with Visa and Mastercard to bring Android Pay to more places on the mobile web.Android Pay users will soon be able to pay on hundreds of thousands of new sites where Visa Checkout or Masterpass are accepted using their preferred device authentication method - like fingerprint recognition. No longer will users have to remember multiple usernames and passwords in order to checkout, saving them time and hassle. Visa Checkout and Masterpass users who link their accounts with Android Pay can look forward to easy and secure payments in stores and online with a simple tap.Android Pay’s open platform also makes the payment integration easy for merchants and developers. Merchants who have enabled Visa Checkout or Masterpass on their sites will instantly benefit from these enhanced payment experiences as the buttons will update automatically. And just as apps such as Fancy and Luxe have seen with Android Pay, these merchants can look forward to faster checkout times, fewer abandoned carts, higher conversions and increased sales.This latest partnership with Visa and Mastercard is an example of how Android Pay can work with partners’ existing solutions to improve the payments experience for users and merchants alike. Look for the new integrations with Visa Checkout and Masterpass within the Android Pay app in early 2017.[...]Google announces strategic partnerships with Visa and Mastercard to bring Android Pay to more places on the mobile web.

High heels, high culture and high ambitions: YouTube Stars in BrusselsHigh heels, high culture and high ambitions: YouTube Stars in BrusselsDirector

Mon, 24 Oct 2016 12:00:00 +0000

For over a decade now, people around the world have been using YouTube to tell their own stories, in their own words. It’s the perfect medium for passion and performance. Cirque du Soleil demonstrated their skills on stage So, to celebrate our YouTube stars across Europe, we invited them to participate in Europe on Stage — a talent-show-meets-viral-video mashup. YouTubers came together last Wednesday at Brussels’ BOZAR Centre for Fine Arts, where France’s Yanis Marshall — who got his first big break through YouTube — got the evening off to a high-octane start with one of his dance team’s legendary high-heel routines. Cirque du Soleil enthralled the audience with contortionism, juggling and beat-boxing: It’s no surprise that their channel has over 34 million views. Louise Pentland — aka SprinkleofGlitter — told her stories about meeting the Pope and becoming a UN Gender Equality Ambassador. The Chopin Institute’s Artur Szklener explained how, thanks to YouTube, Chopin beat shopping in searches in Asia during the international piano competition.And Italy’s Rockin’ 1000 nearly brought the house down. A 1000-person ensemble that began as a joke to convince the Foo Fighters to play in Fabio Zaffagnini’s hometown Cesena, they took the stage with their loud and proud version of “Rebel Rebel”. Commissioner Christos Stylianides spoke about the power of arts and culture There were some quieter, more reflective moments as well. European Commissioner Christos Stylianides spoke about the EU’s response to the refugee crisis, and the vital importance of culture for Europe’s future. His words were followed by a deeply moving musical performance from members of the Orchestra of Syrian Musicians. Earlier this year, YouTube livestreamed a performance by this talented group, who’d been working with Damon Albarn and Africa Express before being scattered by war. By coming together to perform, they celebrated a proud culture that refuses to be silenced, sharing their stories of exile and loss. Europe’s diversity is its strength, and the evening’s range of acts highlighted that. Europeans use the platform to speak to audiences both at home and abroad. There are hundreds of European creators earning six figures a year from their videos, and this revenue is increasing over 50% year-on-year. Around a quarter of YouTube’s global watch time is of European channels, which makes it a powerful tool for exporting the continent’s culture.YouTube is also a powerful tool for bringing out the best in people. We’ve launched the Creators for Change initiative, offering new resources and grants to help counter hate speech. And YouTubers have joined forces under #NichtEgal, a movement dedicated to unite Germans in countering hate online.We are proud to celebrate the creativity that brings together diverse cultures, identities and languages on our platform. A huge thank you to everyone who celebrated with us at last week’s event.[...]To celebrate our YouTube stars across Europe, we invited them to participate in Europe on Stage — a talent-show-meets-viral-video mashup.

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Bring developers together for Hash Code 2017Bring developers together for Hash Code 2017University Programs Specialist

Mon, 24 Oct 2016 07:00:00 +0000

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be an engineer at Google? Now’s your chance to satisfy your curiosity by volunteering to host a Hash Code hub at your university, office or any local co-working space. Hash Code, a team-based programming competition, tasks university students and professionals across Europe, the Middle East and Africa with solving a real Google engineering problem. And we’re looking for developers to help bring the excitement to their own communities in February 2017. Are you up for the challenge?Last year, 17,000 students and professionals from more than 90 countries teamed up to optimize drone delivery schedules for Hash Code’s Online Qualification Round. While teams can compete from wherever they’d like to, many opted to join in from one of the 300+ hubs organized by fellow developers (where, it’s safe to say, they had even more fun). Teams work together to schedule satellite operations during the 2016 Final Round at Google Paris. Laco Pápay organized the hub at his university in Bratislava last year (and is now a Googler based in Zurich). “Before the competition started, we had a lot of fun with set-up: decorating the room, taking pictures for the hub photo contest,” he said. “When the problem was announced and people sat down to work, the fun continued. Competing against teams on a scoreboard is great, but it’s even more exciting if the teams you’re up against are sitting just one desk over.”The Online Qualification Round for 2017 will take place on February 23, 2017. From there, the top 50 teams will be invited to Google Paris for the Final Round on April 1.If you think you might want to host a hub, find out more and sign up on our site. If you’re not able to host but would like to compete, you can be among the first to know when registration opens in December.[...]Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be an engineer at Google? Now’s your chance to satisfy your curiosity by volunteering to host a Hash Code hub at your university, office or any local co-working space.

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San Diego Unified School District designs today’s classroom for tomorrow’s workplaceSan Diego Unified School District designs today’s classroom for tomorrow’s workplaceSuperintendent

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 16:30:00 +0000

Editor’s note: San Diego Unified School District has more than 132,000 students across 226 schools. They’re about to embark on what will soon be one of the largest 1:1 Chromebook programs for a school district. Leading the charge is Cindy Marten, superintendent of San Diego Unified School District. We’re proud to work with San Diego Unified School District  on this journey and excited about what’s to come. At San Diego Unified School District  it’s our mission to prepare our students, who represent more than 180 countries and 60 spoken languages, for the competitive global economy, and we believe that integrating technology into the classroom is a core part of these efforts. To ensure students graduate with the skills, motivation and curiosity to thrive in the workplace of the future we’ve launched a over 47,000 Chromebooks and G Suite for Education, including Google Classroom, district-wide to give all students access to collaborative technology both in the classroom and at home. A new way to evaluate classroom tech The innovation technology team at San Diego Unified School District, lead by Dan Stoneman, our chief innovation officer, created a 178-point rubric for evaluating classroom technology. The team created the rubric with careful attention to the skills we believe will be important in the future workplace — namely, the skills to collaborate effectively and work in the cloud. It’s crucial to reinforce these skills by providing access to technology in the classroom. Many of our students don’t have computers or internet at home. We believe that this program will level the playing field and prepare all of our students for the future workplace. This is why a total of 43 of our schools will be 1:1 with Chromebooks by the end of the year, giving over 16,000 students the ability to use them at home and in the classroom. Our district saved nearly $10 million by choosing Chromebooks for our 1:1 roll-out. Chromebooks are less expensive than other devices on the market, but they are much more reliable. This has made it possible for us to both save money on purchasing new devices as well as invest in devices that will last longer. The money we’ve spent goes much further now that we’re using more affordable devices. This enables us to ensure that every student has a working device that’s up to date with the latest software. Our district saved nearly $10 million by choosing Chromebooks for our 1:1 roll-out. Cindy Marten Superintendent, San Diego Unified School An elementary school student shows her father a class project on her Chromebook Building skills for the future We’re seeing the impact of Chromebooks and G Suite for Education at schools like Jefferson Elementary, which launched 147 Chromebooks for use in the classroom at the start of this school year. We wanted to see students learning to collaborate in the cloud, socialize online and work simultaneously on projects in Google Docs. These tasks require a great amount of critical thinking and communication skills and even though we’re only a month into the school year, we’re starting to see positive results. For example, in Lisa Martin’s fourth grade class students are using Chromebooks to work together on projects that teach communication, collaboration and problem-solving skills. At the beginning of the school year, students interviewed their peers, wrote profiles in Docs, and worked in group settings to share and edit their drafts. Lisa is now seeing students learn how to relate to others both personally and professionally. In her own words, “The students aren’t just [...]

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Android Pay says “Nei hou” to Hong KongAndroid Pay says “Nei hou” to Hong KongGlobal Head of Payment Products

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 21:00:00 +0000

Whether you’re heading out to buy groceries, grabbing a cup of coffee, or picking up some egg tarts for your family and friends, now your Android phone is all you need as you walk out the door. Starting today, Android Pay is available in Hong Kong to help you speed through purchases in stores and in apps.  Hongkongers can now use Android Pay at over 5,000 locations in Hong Kong where contactless payments are accepted, including stores such as at 7-Eleven, Circle K, Fortress, Mannings, Maxim’s Cakes, MX, McDonald’s, Pacific Coffee, PARKnSHOP, SmarTone, Watsons, Wellcome and more. Android Pay also stores your gift cards, loyalty cards and special offers right on your phone. Android Pay can also help you breeze through checkout in your favorite apps, including Boutir Collect, Deliveroo, Kaligo, Klook, Snaptee, and coming soon, Uber and more. Just look for the Android Pay button, and say goodbye to entering your payment and address details each time you buy. To get started, download the app from Google Play. It’s available on all Android devices that are NFC-enabled, supporting Google Play Services, and running on KitKat 4.4 or higher. Android Pay works with MasterCard and Visa cards from BEA, DBS, Dah Sing Bank, Hang Seng Bank, HSBC, and Standard Chartered Bank in Hong Kong. You can add multiple cards (there’s no limit to how many you can add) and select which card you want to use before you pay, so you can always enjoy the best deals available. Merchants, want to accept Android Pay?As an open platform, Android Pay is available to merchants that want to push mobile payments forward. In-store merchants can access the Android Pay Merchant Help Centre or reach out to acquirer partners such as DBS, First Data and Hang Seng to learn more about accepting contactless payments.For online merchants, just visit the Android Pay API developer site to learn how to accept Android Pay in your app. We’re working with payment processors such as: Adyen, Braintree, First Data, Global Payments, Stripe and Worldpay to make enabling Android Pay in Hong Kong simple and easy. Get started with Android Pay in Hong Kong today: Download from Google Play, add your card and start tapping and shopping![...]Starting today, Android Pay is available in Hong Kong to help you speed through purchases in stores and in apps.

New time-saving features in G Suite for EducationNew time-saving features in G Suite for EducationProduct Manager

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 18:00:00 +0000

G Suite for Education helps students move from collecting ideas to creating projects and papers as quickly and easily as possible. Google Docs achieves this by facilitating collaboration, making it easy to work on any device, and weaving in machine intelligence to handle the more mundane elements of getting work done. Today we’re introducing new time-saving features to Docs, Sheets and Slides designed to speed up and simplify the way teachers and students work, so they can focus on what’s really important—teaching and learning. These apps still have all of the same functionality that students and teachers love, with the addition of these new features. 1. Less time spent organizing next steps with Action Items When reviewing a student’s assignment, it's helpful for teachers to give them clear guidance on the next step they should take, like which specific paragraphs need to be reworked in their essay. Now, when teachers type phrases like “AI: Ryan to show work on the answer to this problem,” or “Todo: Andrea to fix punctuation in this paragraph” on desktop, Docs will intelligently suggest an Action Item to assign to the right person, thanks to natural language processing (NLP). Teachers can also manually assign an action item to a student in the Docs, Sheets, and Slides desktop and mobile apps by mentioning them in a comment and checking the new action item box. To help the student stay on track, they will get an email notification and see the action item(s) clearly highlighted with a blue bar when they open the file. 2. Less time spent searching for the files that need attention Once action items have been assigned, it’s now easy for students to identify documents, spreadsheets, and presentations that need their attention. The next time they visit Docs, Sheets, Slides (or Drive) from their laptops or mobile apps, they’ll see a badge on files with action items assigned to them, plus any unresolved suggestions that others have made to their files. 3. Less time spent building questions with smarter Forms Since its launch in 2008, over a billion questions have been asked in Forms. With the help of neural networks, our tools reviewed anonymized data and identified many common patterns in Forms. As a result, Forms can now predict the type of question that is being asked and suggest response options based on what is typed, resulting in 25% faster form creation. For example, a teacher can collect information for the marching band’s upcoming trip. When she types “What day of the week are you and your parent/guardian available?”, Forms will intelligently determine that “Checkbox” is the ideal question type, and generate the days of the week as the appropriate response options that can be added one by one or all together. Also debuting today, is a top-requested feature from our education customers — the new “File upload” question type. Students can now upload files from their computer or Drive — all of which are neatly collected in a folder in the teacher’s Drive. This means students can now add files—from a photo for the marching band program to videos of French dialogue practice—directly to Google Forms. Note: This feature is currently only available for intra-domain use. 4. Less time spent typing with a set of new voice typing commands Last year, we launched Voice typing in Docs on the web helping to capture ideas, big and small, wi[...]

Five new ways to reach your goals faster with G SuiteFive new ways to reach your goals faster with G SuiteProduct Manager

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 17:00:00 +0000

One of the core promises of Google Docs is to help you and your team go from collecting ideas to achieving your goals as quickly and easily as possible. That’s why last month we launched Explore in Docs, Sheets and Slides — with machine intelligence built right in — to help your team create amazing presentations, spreadsheets and documents in a fraction of the time it used to take.Today, we’re introducing five new time-saving features designed to speed up and simplify the way you work, so you can focus on bringing your team’s ideas to life.1. Spend less time figuring out who owns what with Action ItemsAccording to research by the McKinsey Global Institute, employees spend about 20 percent of their work week — nearly an entire day — searching for details internally and tracking down colleagues for answers.  This can be especially true when a document is full of ideas, requests and comments, making it difficult to get a clear sense of who’s responsible for what.To help keep your projects moving, when you type phrases like “Ryan to follow up on the keynote script,” or “Andrea to schedule a weekly check in” on desktop, Docs will intelligently suggest an Action Item to assign to the right person, thanks to Natural Language Processing (NLP). You can also manually assign an Action Item to someone in the Docs, Sheets and Slides desktop and mobile apps by mentioning their name in a comment and checking the new Action Item box. The assignee will get an email notification and see the Action Item(s) clearly highlighted with a blue bar when they open the file. 2. Spend less time searching for the files that need attentionOnce Action Items have been assigned, it’s easy for team members to identify documents, spreadsheets and presentations that need their attention. The next time they visit Docs, Sheets, Slides (or Drive) from their laptops or mobile apps, they’ll see a badge on any files with Action Items assigned to them, plus any unresolved suggestions that others have made to their files. 3. Spend less time building questions with smarter FormsSince its launch in 2008, more than a billion questions have been asked in Forms, allowing us to identify common patterns, like question types and the response options that usually go with them. With the help of neural networks, we can now predict the type of question you’re asking and suggest potential responses for you to choose from, giving you back about 25 percent of the time you used to spend creating a Form.Let’s say you’re planning an all-day event at the office and need to know which day works best for your team. When you type “What days are you available next week?” Forms will intelligently determine that “Checkbox” is the ideal question type, and generate related response options that you can add one by one or all together. Also debuting today is a top-requested feature from our business and education customers — the new “File upload” question type. Your respondents can now upload files from their computer or Drive — all of which are neatly collected for you in a new Drive folder.  Note: This feature is only available for G Suite customers in Forms shared within their organization. 4. Spend less time typing with a set of new voice commandsLast year, we launched Voice typing in Docs on the web to help you capture ideas, big and small, without lifting a fi[...]

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Supporting women in tech at GHC 16Supporting women in tech at GHC 16Editor-in-Chief

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 14:00:00 +0000

The 2016 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing (GHC) begins today, and we’re thrilled to join the 15,000 women and allies convening in Houston for three days of learning, inspiration and community building. Thousands of women at Google are building tools and products that organize the world’s information, help businesses get online and prosper, and forge connections across a growing digital community of 3.5 billion people. So it only makes sense that Google would be part of the world's largest gathering of women technologists. We see GHC as a critical way to connect women in tech and help clear hurdles to their professional development. We know that there’s much more work to do to help level the playing field — and that’s why the mission of the Grace Hopper Celebration is so important. Just yesterday we reported new U.S. research from Gallup and Google that suggests girls are less likely than boys to be told by parents and teachers that they would be good at computer science. We also found that girls are less likely than boys to be aware of computer science learning opportunities outside of school.We’ve worked hard to recruit and support amazing women leaders since the very beginning of Google, but we also want to support efforts to improve women’s representation across the entire tech ecosystem. That's why we've been part of of GHC since 2004. For the past 12 years, we’ve also worked with the Anita Borg Institute (ABI), which produces GHC, to bring more women into computer science careers. Google’s Alan Eustace is a founding member of the ABI Board of Trustees, and his friendship with Anita Borg herself gave rise to the Women Techmakers Scholars Program (formerly known as the Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship Program). To date, the program has awarded more than 1,000 scholarships globally, and we've been very happy to hire many of them to come work here.If you’re planning to attend the conference, don’t be a stranger. If you see one of us sporting a Google T-shirt, we’d love to meet you. Stop by our booth (#1730), or come to one of our 25 presentations. Some of the highlights include our VP of Engineering and Machine Learning Anna Patterson, who will deliver a keynote on entrepreneurism and receive the 2016 ABI Excellence Award; and Captain of Moonshots Astro Teller, who will discuss how to embrace failure in the name of breakthrough. Follow us on Twitter for updates from the show floor and definitely visit our Careers site to find your place with us.[...]We’re thrilled to join 15,000 women and allies at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing for three days of learning, inspiration and community building.

It takes a teacher to create a family-like community at schoolIt takes a teacher to create a family-like community at school

Tue, 18 Oct 2016 21:30:00 +0000

Editor’s Note: Over the next few months, we'll be shining light on the creative power of teachers worldwide. We’ll share a series of teacher stories, building towards a global online gathering of educators on December 3: Education on Air. Join the movement by sharing what teachers mean to you with #ItTakesATeacher. Beatriz Porro’s mom was a teacher in Argentina, but she never thought she’d follow in her mother’s footsteps until she saw the impact teaching had on students’ lives. Today, after 27 years of inspiring children in the classroom, Porro continues to create strong connections with students, empowering them to reach their potential. She teaches Spanish 3, Spanish V AP Language and Culture and Spanish VI AP Literature and Culture at East Leyden High School in Illinois. We talked to Porro to hear how she creates a community in and outside the classroom: It takes a teacher to listen and empower students to speak up For Porro, teaching isn’t just a way to pay the bills and keep the heat running. It’s her passion. In her classroom students have equal input into the curriculum, are comfortable coming to Porro for help and know she’ll always push them to achieve more. “Students see that I love teaching them, and they know they can tell me when they’re having trouble with an assignment or concept,” she says.After a career spanning three decades, Porro is retiring this year, and principal Jason Markey wanted to know her secret for connecting with students. Her answer: listening. Some teachers simply instruct and don’t take the time to understand what students are interested in learning or what topics they’re struggling with. Porro believes listening to students is the key to engaging them in the classroom and encouraging them to study and pass the AP exam. She asks students for ideas and modifies the curriculum based on their feedback, designing classes that everybody can get excited about.For example, Hilda, a senior at East Leyden who previously lived in Mexico, suggested that her class discuss their thoughts about the book Letters from Hernan Cortes, and share their ideas with her former classmates in Mexico. The two classes are planning to talk via Skype about Cortes’ conquests and why the U.S. celebrates Columbus Day. Porro welcomed the opportunity to give her students a culturally-rich perspective of Hernan Cortes. Hilda and her classmates are also interested in talking about the U.S. election and Donald Trump’s relations with Mexico. Porro and East Leyden’s principal recognize that these are going to be controversial discussions, but engaging with students in Mexico will give them with a new point of view of Mexico’s history and a different perspective on U.S. politics.“I love the fact that we can express our perspective toward both current and past events that affect our community today,” says Hilda. “The best conversations were initiated by someone in the class bringing up a controversial thought and Señora Porro encouraging us to continue the conversation by stating our point of view towards that specific topic.”Porro ensures that students have a well-rounded Spanish education and learn about current events in addition to history and culture. Once a week, students in her Spanish 3 class find an article from one of 28 Spanish-speaking newspapers and present what they’ve read to the class. This exposes them to international news that impacts the U.S. and other Spanish-speaking countries.   It takes a teacher to support students in their personal and school lives Some students don’t have the support they need at home, so Porro opens her arms to students whether they need help with Spanish literature or personal troubles. “Last week two students who are going through tou[...]

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¡Oye! Discover even more Latin music on Google Play Music¡Oye! Discover even more Latin music on Google Play MusicProduct Manager

Tue, 18 Oct 2016 17:00:00 +0000

¡Hola! Desplazarse hacia abajo para leer este mensaje en español -Ed.Google Play Music makes it easy for you to listen to the right music at the right moment. Instead of digging through our catalog of 40 million songs on your own, our concierge of playlists helps you find the perfect, expertly curated soundtrack for any mood, activity or time of day. Enjoy music for watching the sunset, cooking or working out.Starting this week in the U.S., if you’re an avid listener of Latin music, when you open Google Play Music you’ll see many more Latin playlists alongside your other recommendations. We’ve added 10 times the number of Latin playlists to Google Play Music with more to come. Each station has been handcrafted — song by song — by our team of Latin music experts (a mix of DJs, musicians and music critics). You can now choose one of our new Latin playlists to make whatever you’re doing even better — whether it’s Rock en español para sudar during your morning workout, banda sing-alongs to make your commute whiz by, or an abuela-approved reggaeton mix for your next family gathering.If you already have playlists and artists you like listening to, Latin music won't replace them. We still want to give you the right music at the right time — whether that's Britney or Romeo Santos. Now, you'll just see even more Latin music playlists to make each of your moments better. ¡Oye! Descubre más música Latina en Google Play MúsicaCon Google Play Música puedes disfrutar fácilmente de la mejor música en el momento adecuado. En lugar de buscar a través de nuestro catálogo de 40 millones de canciones, nuestras listas musicales personalizadas te permiten escuchar canciones y estaciones de radio basadas en lo que estés haciendo, tu estado de ánimo u hora del dia. Encuentra música para cuando estes viendo el atardecer, cocinando o haciendo ejercicio.A partir de esta semana en los EE.UU., si eres un fanático de la música Latina, al usar Google Play Música verás más listas y estaciones de música Latina junto a otras recomendaciones basadas en tus preferencias musicales. Hemos añadido 10 veces el número de listas de música Latina a Google Play Música, y esto es solo el principio!. Cada estación ha sido diseñada a mano - canción por canción - por nuestro equipo de expertos en música Latina (una mezcla de DJs, músicos y críticos musicales). Ahora puedes elegir una de nuestras nuevas listas para hacer lo que estás haciendo aún mejor. Escucha "Rock en español para sudar" cuando estés haciendo ejercicio por la mañana, banda sing-alongs cuando estés manejando, o un reggaeton mix aprobado por la abuela durante tu próxima reunión familiar.Si ya tienes listas de canciones y artistas que te gustan escuchar, nuestras listas de música Latina no las reemplazan. Queremos brindarte la mejor música en el momento adecuado — ya sea Britney o Romeo Santos. Ahora veras mas listas y estaciones de radio con música Latina para hacer de cada momento uno mejor.[...]

Racial and gender gaps in computer science learning: New Google-Gallup researchRacial and gender gaps in computer science learning: New Google-Gallup researchComputer Science Education Program Manager

Tue, 18 Oct 2016 08:00:00 +0000

Today, we’re releasing new research from our partnership with Gallup that investigates the demographic inequities in K-12 computer science (CS) education in two reports, Diversity Gaps in Computer Science: Exploring the Underrepresentation of Girls, Blacks and Hispanics and Trends in the State of Computer Science in U.S. K-12 Schools. We surveyed 16,000 nationally representative groups of students, parents, teachers, principals, and superintendents in the U.S.  Our findings explore the CS learning gap between white students and their Black and Hispanic peers as well as between boys and girls and confirm just how much demographic differences matter.  We’re excited to share this data to bring awareness to issues on the ground in order to help expand CS education in meaningful ways. Progress around access has been made in K-12 CS education. We found that 40 percent of K-12 principals say they offer CS classes with programming/coding, up from 25 percent the year before, an increase that may be explained by the tremendous increase in support and awareness of CS education. However, a great deal of work still remains, as access for students is not universal, and disparities exist particularly for underrepresented groups:Black students are less likely to have access to CS in classes at school compared to white or Hispanic students. Specifically, 47 percent say they have dedicated CS classes, compared to 58 percent of white students and 59 percent of Hispanic students.  Black and Hispanic students are less likely than white students to use computers at home and/or at school frequently. Only 58 percent of Black and 50 percent of Hispanic students say they use a computer at least most days at home, compared to 68 percent of white students. Although structural barriers and lack of access and exposure for Black and Hispanic students are prevalent, their interest is disproportionately higher: Black and Hispanic students are more likely than their white counterparts to be interested in learning CS. Black students are 1.5 times and Hispanic students are 1.7 times as likely as white students to be interested in learning CS.Black and Hispanic parents want their child to learn CS. Of parents whose child has not learned CS, 92 percent of Black and Hispanic parents want their child to learn CS compared to 84 percent of white parents. To help broaden participation in CS learning, we also need to understand barriers beyond access.  The quality of offerings should be rigorous and social perceptions should support all students. We found:Hispanic students have less exposure to role models — just 49 percent of Hispanic students say an adult in their lives works with computers or technology compared to 58 percent of white and 65 percent of Black students.Hispanic students and girls are less likely to see media images of CS reflect themselves and, of students who see those in the media engaged in CS, girls are about half as likely as boys to say that they often see someone like themselves.Girls are less likely than boys to report being told by parents or teachers that they would be good at CS (39 percent versus 56 percent of boys) and are less likely than boys to be aware of CS learning opportunities outside of school.Not surprisingly, both Hispanics and girls have lower confidence to learn CS and are less likely to have learned CS. As our research and decades of work have uncovere[...]

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Course Builder now supports scheduling, easier customization and moreCourse Builder now supports scheduling, easier customization and moreTechnical LeadProduct Manager

Mon, 17 Oct 2016 17:30:00 +0000

Over the years, we've learned that there are as many ways to run an online course as there are instructors to run them. Today's release of Course Builder v1.11 has a focus on improved student access controls, easier visual customization and a new course explorer. Additionally, we've added better support for deploying from Windows! Improved student access controls A course's availability is often dynamic - sometimes you want to make a course available to everyone all at once, while other times may call for the course to be available to some students before others. Perhaps registration will be available for a while and then the course later becomes read-only. To support these use cases, we've added Student Groups and Calendar Triggers.Student Groups allow you to define which students can see which parts of a course.  Want your morning class to see unit 5 and your afternoon class to see unit 6 -- while letting random Internet visitors only see unit 1?  Student groups have you covered.Calendar Triggers can be used to update course or content availability automatically at a specific time.  For instance, if your course goes live at midnight on Sunday night, you don't need to be at a computer to make it happen.  Or, if you want to unlock a new unit every week, you can set up a trigger to automate the process.  Read more about calendar triggers and availability.You can even use these features together.  Say you want to start a new group of students through the course every month, giving each access to one new unit per week.  Using Student Groups and Calendar Triggers together, you can achieve this cohort-like functionality. Easier visual customization In the past, if you wanted to customize Course Builder's student experience beyond a certain point, you needed to be a Python developer.  We heard from many web developers that they would like to be able to create their own student-facing pages, too.  With this release, Course Builder includes a GraphQL server that allows you to create your own frontend experience, while still letting Course Builder take care of things like user sessions and statefulness. New course explorer Large Course Builder partners such as Google's Digital Workshop and NPTEL have many courses and students with diverse needs.  To help them, we've completely revamped the Course Explorer page, giving it richer information and interactivity, so your students can find which of your courses they're looking for.  You can provide categories and start/end dates, in addition to the course title, abstract and instructor information. In v1.11, we've added several new highly requested features. Together, they help make Course Builder easier to use and customize, giving you the flexibility to schedule things in advance.We've come a long way since releasing our first experimental code over 4 years ago, turning Course Builder into a large open-source Google App Engine application with over 5 million student registrations across all Course Builder users. With these latest additions, we consider Course Builder feature complete and fully capable of delivering online learning at any scale. We will continue to provide support and bug fixes for those using the platform.We hope you’ll enjoy these new features and share how you’re using them in the forum.  Keep on learning![...]Today's release of Course Builder v1.11 has a focus on improved student access controls, easier visual customization and a new course explorer.

Announcing Google Cloud Next ’17Announcing Google Cloud Next ’17VP of Marketing

Mon, 17 Oct 2016 17:00:00 +0000

Mark your calendars! Next ’17, our marquee event for the Google Cloud community, will take place on March 8–10, 2017 at Moscone Center West in San Francisco.

Next ’17 is the destination for Google Cloud developers, partners, customers and IT professionals to learn, get inspired and experience first-hand the tools, technologies and services that Google Cloud is building for the next-generation enterprise, including all of the products across Google Cloud Platform, G Suite, Maps, Devices and Education.

We’ll kick things off on March 8 with keynotes featuring the Google Cloud leadership team, new product announcements and demonstrations and perspectives from industry leaders. There’s so much great content in the works for this year’s event that we’re adding a third day to the agenda. Throughout these three days, we’ll be hosting more than 200 sessions, hands-on code labs, solutions workshops, machine learning activities, partner tracks, technical training and certification programs.

Attendees will be able to connect with the entire Google Cloud team, including our engineers, product leadership, developer advocates and more. We'll also have hundreds of partners involved throughout Next ‘17, bringing together the entire Google Cloud ecosystem.

Sign up here and we’ll keep you posted when registration opens and other important updates become available.

See you at Moscone in March!

(image) Mark your calendars! Next ’17, our marquee event for the Google Cloud community, will take place on March 8–10, 2017 at Moscone Center West in San Francisco.

Making travel planning less stressful this holiday seasonMaking travel planning less stressful this holiday seasonProduct Manager

Mon, 17 Oct 2016 16:00:00 +0000

Whether you’re heading home for the holidays or escaping to some exotic destination, one of the most time-consuming and stressful parts of travel planning is finding the right flight and hotel. Sixty-nine percent of U.S. leisure travelers worry that they're not finding the best price or making the best decision while booking a trip — making this kind of purchase more worrisome than financial investments, home improvements or electronics purchases.* This holiday season we’re making travel planning less stressful by updating you when flights are likely to increase in price, helping you find good hotel deals, and making travel planning easier on mobile.Making it easier than ever to choose the right flight Google Flights can now help you be more confident that you’re booking your flight at the right time to get the best price. We now show you when prices are expected to increase for some specific flights and routes you’re interested in. After selecting a specific flight, a notification may appear letting you know when the current fare is expected to expire and how much you can save if you book now. For example, this flight to San Diego is likely to cost more in eight hours — and you would likely save $87 if you book before then. If you’re looking at a certain route like New York to San Diego, but haven’t selected a specific flight yet, you may see a notification bar with multiple tips showing how to find the best price for this route. Tips can include things like recommendations for alternate airports or dates. You may also see a new tip telling you about an expected price jump based on historic prices for that route. When you tap on the card, you’ll see more details like how much the price is likely to increase and when. If you’re not ready to book yet, you can choose to track your flight or route and receive notifications via email letting you know when prices are expected to change. Fare expiration and expected price jump notifications will be rolling out over the coming weeks everywhere Google Flights is available. You’ll also continue to receive updates when prices actually do increase or decrease significantly for tracked flights.                                                       Tracked flights on mobile and email notification of price change. We’re also making it easier to find flights on the go. Next time you visit Google Flights, you’ll be able to track and manage saved flights seamlessly on your phone.If you’re still looking for inspiration on where to travel, tap on Explore to find ideas on destinations to visit based on the type of vacation you’re looking for. For example, you can look for destinations in the Caribbean with direct flights only.  Providing more ways to uncover deals in hotel searchWe’re also making it easier to immediately recognize and find more deals when searching on Google for hotels in the location of your choice, like “hotels in new york”. We already label deals when a hotel’s price is lower than usual compa[...]

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Setting teachers, students and parents up for success with technology: 5 tips from Bethpage Union Free School DistrictSetting teachers, students and parents up for success with technology: 5 tips from Bethpage Union Free School DistrictAssistant Superintendent for Instruction and Technology

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 20:00:00 +0000

Editor’s note: As part of the ExploreEDU series, schools are working with Google for Education Premier Partners to throw open their doors and invite neighboring educators to learn first-hand from their own experiences using Google tools to innovate and improve. To see if there is an event near you visit the ExploreEDU site. For those that aren’t able to join these events, we’ll also share the schools’ experiences here. Today’s guest author is David Schneider, assistant superintendent for instruction and technology from Bethpage Union Free School District. Their district is hosting an event on November 1 with CDW. About four years ago we set an ambitious goal to enable each individual student to create an individualized learning pathway, and we determined the best way to meet that goal was through providing the right technology to our students and teachers. We selected Chromebooks and G Suite for Education (formerly Google Apps for Education) primarily because of their simplicity and collaborative capabilities. In order for the rollout to be a success, we knew we needed the support of students, teachers and parents. We had to teach everyone in the district how to get the most out of the new technology. Based on our experiences here are my tips to successfully introduce new technology in the classroom: 1. Bring in outside expertise We invited several Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) trainers on campus for our summer teacher training. BOCES offers programs to help teachers integrate technology in the classroom and meet New York education standards. 75 percent of our teachers took this initial professional development course. While all participants felt better prepared to begin the school year, our teachers were particularly inspired by the way one BOCES trainer taught the pedagogy and gave practical advice. Throughout the year, we invited her back numerous times to provide a wide variety of professional development, from 30-minute one-on-one sessions to professional training workshops both during and outside school hours. As our district became familiar with the technology, teachers and administrators started training their peers on the basics of Google Docs and other foundational topics. 2. Encourage teachers to share insights Before we introduced Chromebooks at Bethpage High School, many ninth grade teachers didn’t know how to use them effectively. Rising ninth grade students had been using Chromebooks for a year, and we realized we needed to level the playing field in the classroom. Our district organized collaborative meet and greets for eighth grade teachers to share Chromebooks advice with their ninth grade colleagues. They discussed how they’re using Chromebooks in the classroom and best practices to engage students through technology. When teachers share their experiences and offer advice on ways to overcome challenges, our teachers gained a much better understanding of how the devices could make their lives more effective and efficient. 3. Turn resistors into advocates by solving their pain points When we introduce new teaching resources, there are always some early adopters and some resistors. To win over the resistors, I decided to share a few examples of how technology can improve the teaching experience. For example, for formative assessments such as Exit Tickets, many teachers typically printed 120 copies of a question, cut each question into separate strips, had the students fill them out, collected them and kept them organized until they read through each answer. I showed how with Google Forms, they could simply send th[...]

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Celebrating Hispanic Heritage MonthCelebrating Hispanic Heritage MonthSocial Impact Team

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 15:00:00 +0000

As the daughter of a Mexican immigrant, sharing Latino culture with my wider community is a daily part of life. From practicing Mexican folk dances with classmates to introducing neighbors to our favorite traditional foods, my family is always grateful to share our experiences as Latinos in the U.S. That's why I've been excited to help with Google's celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month — a time to reflect on and celebrate the contributions Latinos make to our company and our country.Latino Heritage and Cultures collectionTo kick off Hispanic Heritage Month, Google Arts & Culture published a dedicated collection of artifacts, archives and stories of Latino Heritage and Cultures from across the Americas. You can explore influences of Latino art and expression from ancient civilizations like the Aztec and the Inca from today’s modern street art in Puerto Rico, Argentina, and the United States. In total, the collection includes 55 institutions from 11 countries, 14K artifacts and artworks, 117 expertly curated exhibits, and 180+ virtual tours of heritage and cultural sites. See some highlights in our video: Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month on Google Arts & Culture HOLA celebrations at GoogleWe also celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month across Google’s campuses, where members and allies of HOLA, the Hispanic Googler Network, promoted Latino culture, leadership and civic engagement. On September 16, 50 Googlers from across the globe gathered in Washington, D.C., for a three-day Leadership Summit. There, we met with organizations like Voto Latino, brainstorming ideas on how to get out the vote; advised local organizations like the Latin American Youth Career Center and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation using digital tools in the classroom; and mentored students from the Georgetown Scholarship Program pursuing careers in technology.HOLA members continued the HHM festivities in their home offices. Googlers in Mountain View hosted the rock band Maná, who spoke about their interest in social good and music. And just earlier this week, we welcomed Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez, who discussed the importance of access to Latino mentors, the value of immigrants in the American workforce, and the necessity of technology for 21st century careers. You can meet some of our HOLA members on our Instagram account. Members of HOLA host Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month Support for Latino students and familiesAt Google, we understand that diverse and inclusive environments are essential to building products and solutions that work for everyone. That’s why we invest in increasing educational opportunities for students of all backgrounds to pursue futures in technology. This month is committing $1 million to local Silicon Valley organizations to help close these gaps in educational success for Latino students and families.Across the U.S., Latino students aren’t being adequately prepared for college experiences or college level math. In our own backyard, Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District, 73 percent of Hispanic high school juniors do not meet math standards — compared [...]

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Refreshing our commitment to renewable energy in the NetherlandsRefreshing our commitment to renewable energy in the NetherlandsDirector

Fri, 14 Oct 2016 13:00:00 +0000

Google has joined forces with three leading Dutch companies — AkzoNobel, DSM and Philips — to jointly source power from renewable energy projects in the Netherlands. Our first agreement is to buy power from a new wind farm initiative established by a new community-owned cooperative of 4000 people in Zeeland called Windpark Krammer. With this investment, we’ll be positioned to power even more of our European operations with renewable energy, following on the heels of our news from the Nordics in June.

This new agreement also marks the first time Google has teamed up with local citizens to create what is effectively a consumer-to-business energy partnership. Together the four companies have agreed to source a total of 0.35 TWh per year from Windpark Krammer when it becomes operational in 2019. The agreement is both crucial for the funding of the wind park and for the sustainable ambitions of all four companies.

Our Dutch datacenter will run on 100% renewable energy

We are committed to powering 100% of our global datacenter operations with clean energy, and in the Netherlands, this is the second renewable energy purchase commitment Google has made. In 2014, we announced that Google would purchase all of the energy output from a new wind park in Delfzijl. Thanks to this agreement 19 new wind turbines have been built and our datacenter in Eemshaven will run on 100% renewable energy from the day it opens later this year.

Long-term collaboration

The four companies in the consortium have spent worthwhile time putting their effort into working together to exploring market opportunities. Our partnership represents a new approach in the Netherlands in which corporations join hands to enter jointly into a renewable Power Purchase Agreement.

Largest purchaser of renewable energy…and helping others do the same

The new collaboration fits into Google’s goal to help power the world with clean energy. So far we have committed to purchase nearly 2.5 gigawatts of renewable energy — equivalent to taking over 1 million cars off the road and making us the largest non-utility purchaser of renewable energy in the world.

Separately, we've committed to invest nearly $2.5 billion in renewable energy projects globally, which makes us one of the largest corporate investors in renewable energy in the world. We believe that through these two initiatives, we're creating a better future for everyone. Having reached these impressive milestones, we’re very excited to help other companies green their own footprints as we are doing with ours.

(image) Google has joined forces with three leading Dutch companies — AkzoNobel, DSM and Philips — to jointly source power from renewable energy projects in the Netherlands.