Last Build Date: Thu, 23 Feb 2017 14:00:00 +0000
Thu, 23 Feb 2017 14:00:00 +0000In 2015, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and mobile analytics solutions provider iVEDiX came together to create the HIV Situation Room, a mobile app designed to help fight the HIV epidemic in Kenya. The app uses Google Maps APIs to create a comprehensive picture of HIV prevention efforts, testing and treatment — and make this programmatic data accessible both to local staff in clinics and others on the front lines, as well as to policy makers.We sat down with Taavi Erkkola, senior advisor on monitoring and evaluation for UNAIDS, and Brian Annechino, director of government and public sector solutions for iVEDiX, to hear more about the project and why they chose Google Maps APIs to help them in the fight against HIV.How did the idea for the UNAIDS HIV Situation Room app come about?Taavi Erkkola: As of 2015, UNAIDS estimates a total of 36.7 million people living with HIV globally. Of those, 2.1 million are newly infected, with approximately 5,700 new HIV infections a day. Sixty-six percent of all infected by HIV reside in sub-Saharan Africa, and approximately 400 people infected per day there are children under age 15. To effectively combat HIV, we need access to up-to-date information on everything from recent outbreaks and locations of clinics, to in-country educational efforts and inventory levels within healthcare facilities. UNAIDS has a Situation Room at our headquarters in Geneva that gives us access to this kind of worldwide HIV data. But we wanted to build a mobile app that provided global access to the Situation Room data, with more detail at a national, county and facility-level.We tested out the app in Kenya because the country has a strong appetite for the use of technology to better its citizens’ health. Kenyan government agencies, including the National AIDS Council, encouraged organizations like Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) and the Ministry of Health to contribute their disease control expertise and data to the Situation Room solution. Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta was an early advocate, and has demonstrated his government’s commitment to making data-driven decisions, especially in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Why did UNAIDS and iVEDiX choose Google Maps, and how did you use Google Maps APIs to build the HIV Situation Room app?Brian Annechino: In Kenya, more than 80 percent of adults own a cell phone, and Android is by far the most popular operating system. Google Maps APIs are available across all platforms, including native APIs for Android, and Google Maps also offers the kind of fine-grained detail we needed — for example, the locations of more than 7,500 Kenyan healthcare facilities servicing the HIV and AIDS epidemic. Using data from multiple sources along with Google Maps, we can map things like a clinic’s risk of running out of antiretroviral medicine.Onix, a Google Premier Partner, identified the right Google Maps components to build the app and helped us procure the licensing we needed. We used the Google Maps Android API to build the main interface. Since it was important to have the most accurate and up-to-date map data for Kenya to support the effort, we used the Street View feature of the Google Maps Android API to let people zoom into the street level and see clinics that offer HIV services in locations where Street View imagery is available.TE: These mapping capabilities are critical because we need to give our county-level users as much insight as possible on service delivery at health facilities. Decision-makers in HIV response are at national and county-level. In this app, we’re able to combine multiple data sources to get a more comprehensive picture of HIV prevention efforts, testing and treatment across these levels.What kind of data does the HIV Situation Room app display?TE: The app taps into three data sources. The first is UNAIDS data set about country-by-country HIV estim[...]
Wed, 22 Feb 2017 18:00:00 +0000On March 8-10, Google will host one its largest events ever — Google Cloud Next 2017. In the last year, the Google Cloud team has introduced some new products and solutions to help businesses face some of their biggest productivity problems. Next is our way of bringing together customers and partners under one roof to see the results of all these updates. That includes the latest cloud innovations and more than 200 sessions, where you can check out new products and features firsthand.While I applaud anyone who figures out a way to attend all 200, there are a few sessions that you should definitely see if you want ideas to help boost your team’s productivity.One that comes to mind is the Building stronger teams with team-based functionality session. Think about when you work on a project at home. Now think about how you work on a project at work. Do you find that your work’s success depends on a team of people rather than one person? Most would say yes. Yet, historically, productivity tools have focused on helping individuals get more done — like how you manage your inbox or tackle your to-do list. Since we rely on teams to successfully complete tasks, we need tools to help that group be more productive as a whole. It’s a new concept, and I’m excited that this session will share some of the early work that we’re doing to move beyond individual productivity to, instead, use technology to help entire teams achieve more.Businesses hear all the time about how machine learning can have a positive impact, and many are interested to see how they can achieve that same impact for their companies. Fortunately, Google has always been at the forefront of machine learning technologies like computer vision, predictive modeling, natural language processing and speech recognition.To that end, I recommend checking out Machine learning powering the workforce: Explore in Google Docs to see how machine learning in G Suite can instantly help you tackle everyday tasks and complex business challenges with the click of a button. Then, follow that up with Introduction to Google Cloud Machine Learning to learn how you can build your very own custom business applications on Google Cloud Platform (GCP).Whether it's using the Sheets API to give project managers using Asana a way to do deeper comparison of their projects, or using the Slides API to create a deck in Slides from a Trello board in just one click, the ways in which our customers and partners are automating their processes using G Suite APIs are impressive (and growing). The APIs we’re building across G Suite, as part of the larger Cloud platform, are being tailored to solve the most common business flows and the Automating internal processes using Apps Script and APIs for Docs editors session shows how some folks are already using Apps Script to make their internal processes hum.These are the sessions that excite me, but you can find the sessions that excite you in the full Next '17 agenda. And if you’re wondering, you can still register. Grab your spot and I’ll see you there![...]
Wed, 22 Feb 2017 14:00:00 +0000
Google Cloud Platform (GCP) serves more than one billion end-users, and we continue to seek ways to give researchers access to these powerful tools. Through the National Science Foundation’s BIGDATA grants program, we're offering researchers $3M in Google Cloud Platform credits to use the same infrastructure, analytics and machine learning that we use to drive innovation at Google.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) recently announced its flagship research program on big data, Critical Techniques, Technologies and Methodologies for Advancing Foundations and Applications of Big Data Sciences and Engineering (BIGDATA). The BIGDATA program encourages experimentation with datasets at scale. Google will provide cloud credits to qualifying NSF-funded projects, giving researchers access to the breadth of services on GCP, from scalable data management (Google Cloud Storage, Google Cloud Bigtable, Google Cloud Datastore), to analysis (Google BigQuery, Google Cloud Dataflow, Google Cloud Dataproc, Google Cloud Datalab, Google Genomics) to machine learning (Google Cloud Machine Learning, TensorFlow).
This collaboration combines NSF’s experience in managing diverse research portfolios with Google’s proven track record in secure and intelligent cloud computing and data science. NSF is accepting proposals from March 15, 2017 through March 22, 2017. All proposals that meet NSF requirements will be reviewed through NSF’s merit review process.
To get an idea of the potential impact of GCP, consider Stanford University’s Center of Genomics and Personalized Medicine, where scientists work with data at a massive scale. Director Mike Snyder and his lab have been involved in a number of large efforts, from ENCODE to the Million Veteran Program. Snyder and his colleagues turned to Google Genomics, which gives scientists access to GCP to help secure, store, process, explore and share biological datasets. With the costs of cloud computing dropping significantly and demand for ever-larger genomics studies growing, Snyder thinks fewer labs will continue relying on local infrastructure.
“We’re entering an era where people are working with thousands or tens of thousands or even million genome projects, and you’re never going to do that on a local cluster very easily,” he says. “Cloud computing is where the field is going.”
“What you can do with Google Genomics — and you can’t do in-house — is run 1,000 genomes in parallel,” says Somalee Datta, bioinformatics director of Stanford University’s Center of Genomics. “From our point of view, it’s almost infinite resources.”
Tue, 21 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0000More than a year ago, the Google Cloud Customer team, which focuses on providing helpful information to G Suite users, set out to create the Transformation Gallery — a resource for businesses to search and find tips on how to transform everyday processes in the workplace using Google Cloud tools. As a part of a monthly series, we’ll highlight some of the best Transformation Gallery tips to help your teams achieve more, quicker. Today, we take a look at how managers can save time by automating simple manual processes in industries like retail and financial services. Speed up approval workflowsManaging the flow of information between employees can be overwhelming. It can get in the way of the actual work you need to do. Whether you’re entering paper-form data into a spreadsheet or emailing back and forth for approvals, at some point, these manual workflows require a lot of upkeep, or worse, they break. Here are a few steps you can take to automate your day: 1. Think of a process to improveLook around your desk or inbox for a time-consuming request process. It might be for employee performance evaluations, requesting equipment for a new hire, or collecting daily production reports. Now, think through the steps of the process and map it out. What information do you need to collect or pass on? Who needs to review it or approve it? Who needs to be notified of the status? 2. Use Forms to collect dataWith that process in mind, build a survey using Google Forms. Make sure it has all the fields included in it for the information you need. You can also collect file uploads directly from participants at the same time you collect data, which makes it easy for employees to submit information without going back-and-forth. Here’s an example where retail teams used Forms to collect store manager feedback. 3. Set up your response spreadsheetAny data you collect in Forms automatically populates in a single spreadsheet in Sheets. Be sure to share the sheet with those who need to take action once a response is submitted, and have your team set up spreadsheet notifications. That way, everyone knows when responses are in or data changes on the sheet. Add extra columns to the sheet for editors to update the status of an entry, indicate an approval, or add additional details. Now, you’ve got a single electronic record that your team can use to check on status and requests. Here’s an example where employees used Sheets to track interoffice transfers. 4. Automate further with Apps ScriptIf you want to make it even more automatic, use Apps Script. Set up one or more approval workflows, and send notifications and reminders to approvers and requestors through email. You can also program the script to update spreadsheets or other G Suite tools with data on the approval status as it happens. Here’s a simple example from The G Suite Show: And if you’re interested in a deeper dive on Apps Script, there’s a session at Google Cloud Next ‘17 called "Automating internal processes using Apps Script and APIs for Docs editors," that can help you get familiar with the tool. Register for Next ‘17 here.These are just a few ways you can automate workflows, and here are some often overlooked benefits: The approval process is standardized and streamlinedSheets digitally tracks all requests, which is great for historical data and audits (and the sheet can be shared.)Notifications are sent automatically for approvals and statusForms creates a simple and consistent way for employees to make requestsEmployees can use a mobile device to initiate and complete a requestBest of all, by transforming your workflows with these tips, you and your coworkers will save time. Something we can all appreciate. [...]
Fri, 17 Feb 2017 20:00:00 +0000At Google Cloud, we’re working closely with the healthcare industry to provide the technology and tools that help create better patient experiences, empower care teams to work together and accelerate research. We're focused on supporting the digital transformation of our healthcare customers through data management at scale and advancements in machine learning for timely and actionable insights.Next week at the HIMSS Health IT Conference, we're demonstrating the latest innovations in smart data, digital health, APIs, machine learning and real-time communications from Google Cloud, Research, Search, DeepMind and Verily. Together, we offer solutions that help enable hospital and health IT customers to tackle the rapidly evolving and long standing challenges facing the healthcare industry. Here’s a preview of the Google Cloud customers and partners who are joining us at HIMSS.For customers like the Colorado Center for Personalized Medicine (CCPM) at the University of Colorado Denver, trust and security are paramount. CCPM has worked closely with the Google Cloud Platform (GCP) team to securely manage and analyze a complicated data set to identify genetic patterns across a wide range of diseases and reveal new treatment options based on a patient’s unique DNA. And the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard has used Google Genomics for years to combine the power, security features and scale of GCP with the Broad Institute’s expertise in scientific analysis.“At the Broad Institute we are committed to driving the pace of innovation through sharing and collaboration. Google Cloud Platform has profoundly transformed the way we build teams and conduct science and has accelerated our research," William Mayo, Chief Information Officer at Broad Institute told us.To continue to offer these and other healthcare customers the tools they need, today we’re announcing support for the HL7 FHIR Foundation to help the developer community advance data interoperability efforts. The FHIR open standard defines a modern, web API-based approach to communicating healthcare data, making it easier to securely communicate across the healthcare ecosystem including hospitals, labs, applications and research studies."Google Cloud Platform’s commitment to support the ongoing activities of the FHIR community will help advance our goal of global health data interoperability. The future of health computing is clearly in the cloud, and our joint effort will serve to accelerate this transition," said Grahame Grieve, Principal at Health Intersections, FHIR Product LeadBeyond open source, we're committed to supporting a thriving ecosystem of partners whose solutions enable customers to improve patient care across the industry.We’ve seen great success for our customers in collaboration with Kinvey, which launched its HIPAA-compliant application backend as a service on GCP to leverage our cloud infrastructure and integrate its capabilities with our machine learning and analytics services. “In the past year, we’ve seen numerous organizations in healthcare, from institutions like Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health that are building apps to transform care, education and research, and startups like iTether and TempTraq that are driving innovative new solutions, turn to Kinvey on GCP to accelerate their journey to a new patient-centric world,” said Sravish Sridhar, CEO of Kinvey.We’ve also published a new guide for HIPAA compliance on GCP, which describes our approach to data security on GCP and provides best-practice guidance on how to securely bring healthcare workloads to the cloud.Stop by our booth at HIMSS to hear more about how we’re working with the healthcare industry across Google. We would love to learn how we can engage with you on your next big idea to positively transform healthcare.[...]Next week at the HIMSS Health IT Conference, we're demonstrating the latest innovations in smart data, digital health, AP[...]
Wed, 15 Feb 2017 23:00:00 +0000Editor’s note: We’re highlighting education leaders across the world to share how they’re creating more collaborative, engaging classrooms. Today’s guest author is Rebecca Vivian, one of the keynote speakers from Education on Air, Google’s free online conference which took place in December 2016. Rebecca, a Research Fellow at the computer science education research group (CSER) at the University of Adelaide in Australia, shares professional development ideas for preparing teachers for a classroom focused on computational thinking and computer science. These days, we need to prepare the next generation of students to be creators—not just consumers—of digital technology. As the demand for computer science and computational thinking skills increases, countries are integrating these skills into their K-12 curriculum. This year, Australia implemented a digital technologies curriculum, incorporating the teaching of computational thinking and CS into curricula from foundation level, and many other countries are rapidly following suit. But teachers need help to implement this type of digital focussed curriculum.One of the ways we can support teachers in this area is via "massive open online courses," or MOOCs. In Australia, the computer science education research group (CSER) at the University of Adelaide, is partnering with Google to develop online communities and free MOOCs, where K-12 teachers can share their creative ideas and suggest professional development lessons. With these resources, teachers are learning to integrate computational thinking and computer science into their curriculum.Since launching the digital technologies MOOC in 2014, we’ve been able to scale professional learning across Australia and introduce new learning styles such as algorithmic thinking, which teaches students to develop step-by-step solutions for problems they encounter. More than 7,200 teachers are engaged in this professional learning program and have shared more than 4,500 resources as a result of these MOOCs. The program isn’t just working for experienced CS teachers: Ellie, a 56-year-old grandmother and primary school teacher with virtually no technology background, created a lesson on binary and data resources after taking our first course. In late 2016, the Australian government decided to invest nearly 7 million dollars over four years to scale our efforts further and support remote and low-income communities. Connecting teachers to share creativity and insightThe success of Australia’s MOOCs and online teacher community has proven the value of peer-to-peer professional learning. Teachers have embraced our “professional learning in a box” kits—slide decks of instructor notes, videos, and in-person activity ideas that they can customize to deliver professional learning sessions in their school or community. Teachers also love user-generated content in our online communities because they can interact with teachers who created them, and apply concepts they’ve learned online to their classroom. Education on Air, which I participated in last year, works much like a MOOC by providing a space for people with a shared interest to come together and learn from one another, no matter where they’re located. In my breakout session, “Making Computational Thinking Visible: Classroom Activities and Google Tools,” I explained algorithmic thinking, demonstrated the way it applies to other learning areas, and shared tips on how Google tools can assist in introducing this framework to students. Teachers left the session with ideas they could implement the next day, including tips for engaging lessons that integrate algorithmic thinking, and ideas for applying this framework to other learning areas, such as experiment design. Students need more than coding skills—they need to understand how technology changes the way we live, work and solve problems. The success to date of the digita[...]
Tue, 14 Feb 2017 19:00:00 +0000We’re three weeks away from Google Cloud Next, one of the largest events Google has ever hosted. As we get ready to welcome you on March 8th, I’m reminded of how exciting it is to be in the cloud computing industry right now, helping shape how businesses will work together in the coming years.About six months have passed since we announced G Suite, our set of intelligent apps for business. Since then, we’ve focused on bringing you new collaboration tools, like Team Drives and Jamboard, and have partnered with companies like Box and Slack to help businesses of all sizes unlock productivity across their organizations. At Next, we’ll get a chance to hear from businesses directly about these G Suite additions and collect feedback to shape what we build in the future.I have the privilege to join some of Google’s top leaders on stage at Next, including Diane Greene, Sundar Pichai and Eric Schmidt. While I look forward to hearing my colleagues unpack the potential of cloud for businesses, I’m especially excited to hear from one of our newest Google Cloud leaders, Fei-Fei Li, about the value that machine learning will bring to the enterprise.It’s one thing to talk about product innovations, it’s another to try them for yourself. This year’s Next will feature Cloud Showcase, an area for interactive product experiences, allowing each attendee to see and feel the power of Google Cloud products firsthand. We’re opening up the doors for attendees to experience machine learning, application development, collaboration and productivity through interactive installations that are unique to Google Cloud. Besides the keynotes and show floor, there are over 200 sessions at Next this year. If you need help narrowing down that list, here are some sessions I’m excited for:If you’re interested in learning more about how Machine Learning can impact your business or how you can build more agile, productive teams, check out:Introduction to Google Cloud Machine LearningTransform your business with machine learning and Explore in Google DocsMachine learning powering the workforce: Explore in Google DocsTo learn how to create custom apps with G Suite, or integrate your G Suite apps with existing workflows to accomplish more, there’s:Automating internal processes using Apps Script and APIs for Docs editorsBuild powerful custom apps with App Maker on G SuiteNew Google Docs integrations to streamline your workflowsFor insight into controlling business data, building custom dashboards and running custom queries, be sure to go to:Gaining full control over your organization’s cloud resourcesGetting the most out of Google Admin Reports and BigQueryRegister here to secure your spot at Next ‘17.[...]
Mon, 13 Feb 2017 16:04:00 +0000
In early March, thousands of developers, IT decision makers and cloud industry leaders will descend on Moscone Center West in San Francisco for Next ‘17, Google Cloud’s premier annual conference. Today, I would like to share more information on the major themes for each day as well as more speakers and new ticketing options.
The first day (Wednesday, March 8) of Next ‘17 will feature keynotes from Diane Greene, SVP of Google Cloud; Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google; Eric Schmidt, Chairman of Alphabet and Fei-Fei Li, Chief Scientist for Google Cloud Machine Learning and AI and Professor of Computer Science at Stanford. Our lineup of executives will discuss what Google Cloud offers today and discuss Google Cloud's vision for the future. Attendees will also hear how our customers and partners are embracing the cloud in new and innovative ways. We’re excited that Quentin Hardy (formerly of The New York Times and now with Google Cloud) will be interviewing Marc Andreessen and Vint Cerf on stage. All these keynotes will be followed by a series of fantastic breakout sessions.
On Day 2 (Thursday, March 9), we’ll announce new products for Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and G Suite. Our product and engineering leaders, including Urs Hölzle, Prabhakar Raghavan, Brian Stevens and Chet Kapoor will share roadmaps of Google Cloud’s future product direction. We’ll also see exciting product demos and hear from customers about how Google Cloud is helping them compete and succeed.
The final day (Friday, March 10) of Next ‘17 will be dedicated to Google’s commitment to open source and cloud-native architectures, with deep dives on Kubernetes and TensorFlow with talks from Jeff Dean, Senior Google Fellow and leader of the Google Brain team, along with Rajat Monga to expand on the progress Google is making with TensorFlow and Google Brain.
Start-ups and the venture capital community will come on stage to share how they’re leveraging the cloud to build the next wave of innovative products and services, born in the cloud.
In addition to the speakers we announced in January, we're delighted to announce that Jim Zemlin, Executive Director of the Linux Foundation; Eric Brewer, creator of the CAP theorem and Vice President of Infrastructure at Google and Chris Wright, Vice President and Chief Technologist at Red Hat, who will share more about the Kubernetes project and discuss open source in the enterprise, will also speak at the event.
Finally, I will be sharing Google’s vision for an open cloud platform and what we believe the future holds.
To make Google Cloud Next ‘17 even more accessible to the cloud community, we’re excited to launch new day passes that allow attendees to attend on their day of interest. One-day passes are available for Day 1 or Day 2 of Next ‘17 for $549 and include $300 in GCP credits.
Ready to register? It couldn’t be a better time to take part of Next ‘17. We look forward to welcoming you in March.
Wed, 08 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0000
Last year was an exciting one for the Anvato team. We joined Google Cloud in July and we also rolled out support for 360º video. We’re kicking off this year strong with the recent migration of Anvato’s services onto Google Cloud Platform (GCP) infrastructure.
Now GCP offers a fully managed, end-to-end video processing and management platform for signal acquisition, live and video-on-demand editing, hybrid encoding, social and premium syndication, dynamic ad insertion, authenticated playback, video analytics and player SDKs across all connected devices. The products cover a broad range of cutting-edge video processing solutions for pay TV operators, programmers, broadcasters and live event producers, and GCP is now the preferred option for Anvato customers of the likes of NBCUniversal, Univision, Scripps Networks Interactive, Media General and others – for OTT and cloud-based video processing and delivery.
The launch on GCP provides Anvato customers with new storage and delivery options, access to GCP’s global network of data centers, as well as access to innovation at all levels — hardware, software and operations. Machine learning, automation and additional scale are some of the areas we’re focusing on.
The Anvato team has always believed in thinking big and leading the media industry with innovative technologies. As part of GCP, we’re thinking bigger than ever, and 2017 will no doubt be another big year.
Tue, 07 Feb 2017 17:00:00 +0000Every day, people around the globe rely on the power of Google Search to access the world’s information. In fact, we see more than one trillion searches each year. As we continue to invest in new cloud-based technologies like machine learning to power our web search engine, we want to help businesses harness the same technology to search for internal information. Today, we’re announcing Google Cloud Search (formerly known as Springboard), a new product that uses machine intelligence to provide a unified search experience across G Suite.Sorting through internal information has become increasingly complex as more and more companies move their data and workloads to the cloud. As a result, teams are working on hybrid environments and storing immense amounts of data all over and in various formats. From emails and docs to spreadsheets, slides, forms, internal sites, and more. In fact, according to McKinsey, the average knowledge worker spends 20% of the workweek searching for and consolidating information. Simply put, employees are wasting a lot of time in the process of finding information they need to do their job.A smarter search experience, tailored for youCloud Search brings the best of Google Search and machine intelligence to G Suite. It provides both comprehensive search and proactive recommendations to help you throughout your day.For example, when you open the Cloud Search app on your phone or laptop, you’ll see relevant information organized into simple cards (assist cards) that help you stay on top of your work. Assist cards are a new way to help you find the right information at the right time. Using Google’s machine intelligence technology, these cards can help you prepare for an upcoming meeting or even suggest files that need your attention.Assist cards are designed to be timely and relevant so that you can navigate your workday more efficiently. As we continue to learn how information is most useful to you, we’ll be adding more assist cards to Cloud Search over time. In addition to searching for information, you can also search for people listed in your company’s directory. You’ll see colleagues’ contact details, plus events and files you have in common. You can even choose to send an email, make a call, or start a Hangout with just a tap. For businesses, privacy is a top priority. Cloud Search respects G Suite’s file sharing permissions, so people can only search for and find files that they have access to. This means that company resources like vacation policies can be found by everyone in your organization, but your team projects will only surface to people on your team, and your to-do lists will only be available to you.Breaking down information silos at work Since launching in the Early Adopter Program last summer, companies have been using Cloud Search to break down internal silos and access information more quickly. QAD, an ERP solutions provider for global manufacturing companies, helps businesses manage their finances, supply chain, business intelligence and more. Very little time can be spared sifting through documents to find what’s needed to make strategic business decisions, so QAD uses Cloud Search to help.“At QAD, we operate at a high-level of speed and require technology that provides us agility, flexibility and seamless access to information. Cloud Search provides that. It’s given us the ability to break down silos that exist across different content systems and unlock information with very little effort from IT, “ says Scott Lawrence Lawson, Director of IT Architecture. Coming to G SuiteCloud Search will begin rolling out globally for customers using the G Suite Business [...]
Mon, 06 Feb 2017 15:00:00 +0000Today we're pleased to announce that the European Union’s Data Protection Authorities have confirmed that Google Cloud services’ contractual commitments fully meet the requirements to legally frame transfers of data from the EU to the rest of the world, in accordance with EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC.The authorities have concluded that Google’s agreements for international transfers of data for G Suite and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) are in line with the European Commission’s “model contract clauses” and should therefore not be considered "ad hoc" clauses. In practice, this compliance finding will enable our customers in most EU countries to rely on Google Cloud model contract clauses for the international transfer of data without further authorizations, and will simplify the processing of national authorizations in other countries, where required. It will also help to facilitate our customers’ data protection risk assessments.The review process was conducted in accordance with Working Paper (WP) 226 of the Article 29 Working Party. The Irish Data Protection Authority acted as the lead authority and the Spanish and Hamburg authorities as co-reviewers.Successful completion of the review process marks an important milestone for Google and its customers, as it confirms that the legal protections underpinning the Google Cloud international data flows meet European regulatory requirements.For more details, please visit the EU Data Protection Directive page to find respective decisions for G Suite and Google Cloud Platform. Our customers subject to the relevant regulatory requirements can enter into the applicable model contract clauses via the online processes described here for G Suite services and here for GCP services.FAQsWhat is the Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC?It's the European Union’s directive, which was adopted in 1995 and which regulates the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and the free movement of such data.What are the “model contract clauses” (MCCs)?The Standard Contractual Clauses (also known as "model contract clauses", “model clauses” or “MCCs”) are a set of European Commission approved standard provisions that can be used to achieve compliance with legal requirements pertaining to the transfer of personal data outside of the European Economic Area.What is the Common Opinion Procedure?It's a process adopted by the Article 29 Working Party enabling companies to make use of contractual clauses based on model contract clauses (with some divergences such as additional clauses) in order to frame international transfers of data from different EU Member States. The process was established to enable the competent data protection authorities to reach a coordinated position as to whether the proposed contract conforms with the model contract clausesWhat is the Article 29 Working Party?It's a privacy working group comprised of data protection authorities from each EU Member State, the European Data Protection Supervisor, and the European Commission.What are "ad hoc" clauses in this context?They're clauses created for a particular service that substantially differ from the European Commission’s “model contract clauses” and therefore don't have the same legal value.[...]Today we're pleased to announce that the European Union’s Data Protection Authorities have confirmed that Google Cloud services’ contractual commitments fully meet the requirements to legally frame transfers of data from the EU to the rest of the world, in accordance with EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC.
Thu, 02 Feb 2017 18:00:00 +0000Editor’s note: We spoke to Alberto Fontana, Owner and Global Operations Director of Fontana Gruppo - Special Fasteners, about the company’s growth strategy and how it’s supported by G Suite collaboration tools. Founded in 1952, Fontana Gruppo - Special Fasteners is one of the world’s leading producers of industrial fasteners. The Fontana family business has more than 4,100 employees, 19 production plants on four continents, and an annual turnover of $1billion.Why did you choose Google Cloud’s G Suite to help you grow? In 2014, our annual turnover doubled when we bought one of our main competitors. This helped us expand pretty rapidly. Today, we have factories in Italy, Mexico, Brazil, India and the United States, and we produce more than 10 billion industrial fasteners per year. This rapid global expansion brought fresh challenges we needed to overcome: we had two separate email solutions, our on-premise server system felt outdated, and different locations were using different IT systems. We looked for ways to unify the company and G Suite was a perfect fit.How was the migration process to G Suite?With outstanding assistance from Innext, our Global Change Management Service Partner, we began moving 14 terabytes of files from our servers onto Drive. We wanted our teams to choose G Suite rather than to be forced to make the change, and within just six months, all 4,100 of our staff had Google accounts and Gmail. Data migration was only a part of the whole “Project Innovation” we undertook with Innext, whose team of Google Cloud credentialed trainers educated our people on G Suite features and best practices.How did G Suite impact your office-based teams?Staff at our 19 sites can now work together simultaneously on single, continually-saved documents using Docs or Sheets. No more worrying about having the wrong version or losing information when people fail to save. On top of that, management now has oversight on up-to-the-minute progress, and can leave feedback in clear and simple comments.How have your factory teams benefited from G Suite? Our factory staff surprised us by using G Suite in interesting ways. One example is they use Sheets as an alternative ). The staff installed large screens in the factory on which operators can upload information on a live Sheet, such as daily goals and progress in real-time.How has this helped your teams work together across borders?With G Suite, our managers now use mobile devices more than desktop or laptop computers, even when they’re offline, so that they can stay in touch when they’re visiting sites and clients. At the same time, Hangouts has reduced unnecessary travel, and meetings are easier to arrange on Calendar and at our facilities with Chromebox for Meetings.How do you make sure everything's running smoothly?Unlike with our on-premise servers, we never experience outages or have to spend time on maintenance. For staff feedback, Forms is ideal for collecting vital data from our sales team and global HR.Can you tell us about your experience with Google’s security and compliance? Following a discussion with James Snow, Head of Google Data Security, we’re convinced that Google’s security meets our needs, and is certainly better than our previous servers. One major benefit is that we can partition our information and share it with third parties, such as auditors.What’s next for Fontana Gruppo - Special Fasteners?Beyond universal adoption of G Suite in our Italian HQ and in our foreign branches, we keep improving our new “collaboration and communication experience” by evaluating new initiatives provided by Innext, like our CSS project and customized Transformation Labs. It’s our intention to be more than the biggest industrial fastener company — we w[...]
Tue, 31 Jan 2017 17:00:00 +0000Scale. Speed. Lower total cost of ownership. The cloud offers enterprises significant benefits and gives their teams a freedom that’s as big as their ambitions. G Suite supports such businesses around the world with our unified suite of intelligent apps. Today, more than 3 million paying businesses rely on G Suite to make working together easier, including Whirlpool, PWC, and Woolworths.Having greater control and visibility when protecting sensitive assets, however, should also be a top concern in today’s world. That’s why starting today, we’re giving customers the critical control and visibility they expect (and their CTOs and regulators often require) in G Suite with:More powerful access control for administrators with security key enforcementMore data control with Data Loss Prevention (DLP) for Google Drive, DLP for Gmail, and S/MIME for GmailMore analytics and insights by connecting BigQuery with GmailManage who can access your company’s devices and systemsSecurity key enforcement: In 2011, we introduced 2-step verification for added protection when users log into their Google accounts. With 2-step verification, admins can opt for their company to use Security Keys, which are both easier for users and more secure against common (phishing) attacks than other methods. Security Keys plug directly into a laptop or pair with a mobile device using Bluetooth or NFC, instead of receiving a code via text. Today, we’re adding the ability for admins to enforce this measure by restricting login solely to users with a Security Key. Admins will also be able to manage the deployment of Security Keys and view usage reports.See how stripe enhances account security with G SuiteStripe, a software platform for running an internet business, processes billions of dollars a year for hundreds of thousands of companies around the world. Everyday, Stripe employees rely on G Suite to communicate and collaborate quickly, effectively and securely. Security Key enforcement provides an added layer of protections for Stripe, with advanced authentication controls to combat phishing attempts and unauthorized email access. "Businesses that run on Stripe trust us with some of their most sensitive information, and we take the security of that information extremely seriously. We've found Security Keys to be ideal second factors because they balance ease-of-use with increased account security. G Suite Security Key enforcement gives us a way to easily enforce secure logins for all employees, across both their desktop and now mobile devices, " says Bryan Berg, security team member at Stripe.Control how data is shared beyond your companyData loss prevention (DLP) for Google Drive: In 2015, we launched DLP for Gmail with easy-to-set-up rules, OCR image scan recognition and advanced customization. Today, we’re extending DLP to Google Drive, making it even easier for admins to secure sensitive data, control what content can be stored and protect users from accidentally sharing confidential information externally. G Suite’s DLP protection goes beyond standard DLP with easy-to-configure rules and OCR recognition of content stored in images so admins can easily enforce policies and control how data is shared. S/MIME for Gmail: When it comes to Gmail security, there are dozens of security measures running behind the scenes to keep your emails safe, and we support industry-standard authentication to help combat email spoofing. Unfortunately, other email services that you exchange emails with might not take similar measures to protect your data. That’s why we’re offering additional protection by giving you the option to br[...]
Thu, 19 Jan 2017 21:00:00 +0000
G Suite helps teams cut through clutter and get right down to business: accomplishing more with less rigmarole. In November, we welcomed DocuSign to the Recommended for G Suite Program to trim time businesses spend on e-signatures and approvals. This G Suite integration makes it easy to fast-track signatures with multiple signers, which is especially valuable for our customers in the real estate industry.
Sereno Group, a real estate brokerage firm in California, uses DocuSign and G Suite to schedule signings, maintain communication between agents and clients, and easily exchange paperwork. By using less complicated tools, agents can build their business and clientele faster.
“When our tools are easier to use, agents can spend less time managing paperwork and devote more time to their clients,” said Tim Proschold, VP of Group Strategy & Success at Sereno Group.
Sereno Group agents save time by using other G Suite integrations, like DocuSign for Google Drive and the DocuSign Gmail extension. Agents use Zipforms, online forms used by real estate agents, to store important deal information. Then others can go into these Zipforms, assemble important real estate, add in files or documents stored in Google Drive with the DocuSign for Google Drive integration and send materials to clients for them to sign. Tracking the status of signatures is easy with the DocuSign Gmail extension. Sereno Group agents can see the status of signatures directly in Gmail to know what’s pending and what’s complete.
Other brokers are catching on too. Chris Lopez, broker with World Class Properties, is saving time with DocuSign and G Suite: “I sign between five and 10 documents every day and I save up to 10 minutes on each document. That frees up nearly eight hours a week for me to focus on what’s important for my clients.”These real estate agents are clearly on to something. According to DocuSign, Sereno Group real estate agents are using DocuSign tools more and more — last year they used 18,000 envelope signatures up from 5,500 the year before. To learn more about how to use G Suite and DocuSign for your business, sign up for this webinar on February 7, 2017 at 10am PST / 1pm EST.
Fri, 13 Jan 2017 18:00:00 +0000Successful retail outlets are always striving to improve customer service. Brick-and-mortar stores are borrowing a page from their online counterparts and turning to new technologies like Chrome to help make shopping easier and more fun for customers. Here are five ways retailers are using Chrome to personalize shopping, manage ad campaigns, offer local information and speed up the ordering process:Personalized shopping The best retail experience is personalized and relevant. Putting umbrellas and raincoats in front of a store during a rainstorm, for example, boosts inbound traffic and makes satisfied — and dry — customers. But other than displaying umbrellas in the windows, how can a store advertise a spur of the moment promotion like that? Chico’s, a women’s apparel and accessories chain, uses Chromeboxes to tailor promotions across its U.S. stores. While bikinis are featured in digital displays in Florida, coats might be featured in Chicago and cocktail dresses in Las Vegas. Chico’s is working on bringing personalized content to 5,000 screens in its stores.Express ordering Australia’s Famous Fish by Steve Costi restaurant chain is mixing the best of self-service technology with old-world aesthetics. They introduced kiosk-based interactive menu boards based on Chrome which let people place their orders. This means customers have shorter lines and they get their food faster too. Customers are pleased, and there’s been a noticeable boost to the bottom line. At the company’s Fountain Gate location, for example, average orders are 28.7% higher when customers use the kiosks. “Combining self-service touch screens with dynamic menu boards, the commercial Chrome technology is already providing a huge return on investment,” says Jon Sully, director of Famous Fish. “We’re seeing a noticeable increase in brand awareness and a large boost in customer spend.”Going local Where are the fish biting today? If you’re a sporting goods store and answer that for your customers, they’ll stay loyal for life. Scheels, a sporting-goods chain with 26 stores in 11 states, uses Chrome digital signs to display information about nearby river conditions and advice on the latest equipment and local fishing techniques. “They’re incredibly popular features that have helped build customer loyalty,” says Josh Diemert, lead systems administrator for Scheels.Scheels also lets customers place orders using in-store kiosks. That frees up staff to provide more specialized service to individual customers. “We’ve taken the in-store experience to a new level by leveraging technology to make shopping fun, while at the same time empowering our sales team to deliver a better quality of service,” says Diemert.Managing hundreds of campaignsStore managers have a lot on their plates, and managing in-store digital signage campaigns can distract them from their most important work of helping customers and supporting their staff. Compass Group Canada turned to Chrome digital signage for promoting in-store offers in its restaurants and coffee shops. One marketer can now manage dozens of campaigns using Chrome Device Management, saving hundreds of hours of work a week. And campaigns are carefully tracked to make sure they perform well, leading to a 2% to 4% sales boost, which adds up for a company with $2 billion in annual revenue.Bring more employees and processes onlineIf more retail employees have better access to computing, stores can move many of their processes onlin[...]
Thu, 12 Jan 2017 17:00:00 +0000Whether you have a team of five or 500 a seamless, collaborative workflow is critical in the digital age. Our goal is to make sure that your nonprofit is able to focus on changing the world by using technology to save time -- not waste it. In the digital age though, information sharing can often be complex; your team might not work in the same office, or even the same timezone. Some team members might be in an office with computer access, while others are in the field on mobile devices. Who from your team should be able to access confidential documents? This brings us to a key question: How do you empower team members to work together towards a common goal, and use technology to enable it?Great question. We’d like to introduce you to G Suite - (formerly Google Apps for Work ). G Suite aims to help teams work together in real-time -- no matter where they are in the world.Today, we’re spotlighting a few nonprofits to share how their teams are using Google tools and apps to improve workflow and internal communication. Mercy Beyond Borders - Internal Communication with Sheets & SitesMercy Beyond Borders (MBB) is a U.S. nonprofit that aims to forge opportunities for women and girls in extreme poverty to learn, connect, and lead. Utilizing a small office in the U.S. as home base, MBB targets rural areas in Haiti and South Sudan. In both of these areas, cultural norms and poverty prohibit full participation of women. In fact, these areas offer minimal education and opportunities for employment, which often impedes the development of leadership skills or positions. Mercy Beyond Borders focuses its programs on providing trainings, scholarships, leadership camps, and business loans for women.To achieve their mission, Mercy Beyond Borders faces the challenge of balancing US-based operations with field work in remote areas like South Sudan and Haiti. Their nonprofit partners range from large organizations to local schools to individuals. So how does Mercy Beyond Borders ensure that all staff, vendors, and partners stay connected and working together in sync? MBB-trained nurse in South Sudan village. Photo credit: Mercy Beyond Borders Mercy Beyond Border began using G Suite to streamline its workflow, connecting their team across the globe. Using G Suite, MBB’s team is able to access, share, and collaborate together in real-time. Take a glimpse into how they do it:Track Finances: MBB manages their overseas program budget expenditures in Google Sheets. Using this tool, the domestic office tracks monthly vendor payments in Haiti. This enables the staff to wire more money as needed in order to ensure program success. Additionally, using Sheets enables the team to provide transparency in the organization, clarifying spending and creating a simple overview of total annual expenses. This standardized and collaborative approach to data enables better efficiency and communication between domestic and international offices.Store images: Mercy Beyond Borders regularly takes photos in the field to keep the domestic office up to date on progress and communicate stories to their donors. The team overseas is able to upload the pictures to Google Drive, which allows them to share or retrieve the images at any time. Share Information: It’s imperative that MBB shares frequent updates with the Board of Directors, highlighting current developments, areas for growth, and new opportunities. To keep the Board of Directors apprised of progress, the team created [...]
Mon, 09 Jan 2017 20:00:00 +0000G Suite helps businesses stay connected from all over the globe. Here are a few examples of Google Cloud customers who are using G Suite to collaborate, increase productivity, and drive efficiency, no matter where they are. Customers stock their fridges easier with Morrisons, G Suite, and Google Cloud PlatformEleven million customers trust Morrisons, a leading UK supermarket, to provide quality food at affordable prices each week. With 120,000 staff nationwide across more than 500 sites, good communication is crucial. G Suite helps Morrisons connect every member of their team affordably, whether they’re picking stock in a warehouse or serving customers in store.Morrisons used to print half a million sheets of paper every week and file them in over 3,000 filing cabinets in order to fulfill compliance requirements. Now, with collaboration in Docs and rapid information collection with Forms, they've reduced paperwork. Outside the office, staff have replaced clunky VPNs and outdated handheld devices with G Suite, which can work on any device. And with Google’s intuitive administrative tools, local managers can set up new accounts in three minutes instead of five to ten days.Instead of shared logins, all employees have a G Suite account, and Google+ brings these colleagues from across the company together to share tips and advice. Morrisons also improves services based on customer feedback collected by shop floor staff that use apps on mobile devices. Remote researchers with the UK Department of Health collaborate with G Suite to solve global health concernsApproximately 600,000 patients between 2014-2015 participated in studies with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), a part of the the UK Government’s Department of Health. Whether NIHR researchers are investigating to see if nuts can cure nut allergies or testing the effectiveness of schizophrenia medication, every one of their projects is different in its size, duration, and location. This means they need to cater to a fluctuating roster of around 6,500 remote researchers on top of 2,000 core organizational staff. With G Suite, NIHR has cut their IT system costs approximately in half compared to their previous system and have also saved an estimated several million pounds using Hangouts to replace travel.Each team member uses Gmail instead of disparate email addresses or aliases like before. They use Google+ as a corporate broadcast tool to reach all of their users with news and advice.They also can work from any device with peace of mind knowing that their data will stay secure with appropriate security permissions no matter where they designate their “lab” for a day. Since the team switched to G Suite four years ago, they’ve yet to experience a loss of service or data. NIHR researchers integrate G Suite with the vast array of systems. Some use Awesome Table to plan diaries and manage processes, and others use G Suite and Maps to create heat maps from source data to assist in research. Travis Perkins uses G Suite and Chromebooks to build the UK’s future infrastructureTravis Perkins plc is the UK’s leading building merchant and largest supplier to the construction market. The company’s IT team uses G Suite to help their 30,000 colleagues optimize their work day.Coordinating 2,000 building supply [...]
Mon, 09 Jan 2017 14:00:00 +0000
We're eight weeks out from the most influential cloud conference of the year, and today we're excited to announce new keynote speakers. On March 8-10, 2017, Google Cloud Next '17 will bring together thousands of developers, partners, customers and IT professionals with industry leaders and experts from Google at Moscone Center West in San Francisco.
Next '17 is a unique opportunity to hear from the Google leaders who are helping define the future of the cloud, including Diane Greene, SVP of Google Cloud; Urs Hölzle, SVP of Technical Infrastructure, Google Cloud; Brian Stevens, VP of Cloud Platforms and Prabhakar Raghavan, VP of Apps, to name a few.
In addition, we're excited that Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Alphabet will be sharing their vision in keynotes at Next.
You'll also have the chance to hear from some of the brightest minds in technology, including Fei-Fei Li, Chief Scientist for ML/AI, Google Cloud and Professor of Computer Science at Stanford; Vint Cerf, Google's Chief Internet Evangelist and Sam Ramji, VP of Compute and Developer Services, Google Cloud. We have more exciting industry leaders that will be joining us onstage, so stay tuned for more updates.
We've planned three packed days of content, sessions, talks and tracks to share what's next for Google Cloud and the industry more broadly. Day one will focus on our vision and business strategy, day two will share Google's cloud technology and product roadmap and day three of Next '17 will center around the cloud ecosystem and why we’re committed to building an open cloud.
Beyond the keynotes, Next '17 offers opportunities to engage in hundreds of sessions, code labs, solutions workshops, machine learning activities, technical training, bootcamps and certification programs. Participate in more than 250 technical sessions led by Google experts paired with customers and partners. You can learn about everything cloud, from using cloud machine learning and container development on Google Cloud Platform (GCP), to building with an API-first architecture, to creating G Suite add-ons.
Ready to register? Take advantage of early bird pricing ($500 discount!) until January 17.
We look forward to welcoming you in March.
Thu, 05 Jan 2017 15:00:00 +0000
Today, we’re excited to announce the acquisition of Limes Audio. The Limes Audio team builds technology that makes voice communication systems sound better, so that you can hear the person you're talking to, and they can hear you.
As more and more businesses adopt our video conferencing solutions, powered by Chromebox for Meetings and Google Hangouts, it’s critical that we provide a great audio experience. With G Suite customers now relying on video communications for their day-to-day meetings, it's more important than ever to ensure low-cost, high-quality audio.
One of the biggest challenges to a great video meeting is the audio quality. Conference rooms today come in all shapes and sizes and that can provide a challenge for acoustics. Additionally, a poor internet connection can hamper voice quality in video conference calls. Limes Audio has been building solutions that remove the distracting noise, distortion and echoes that can affect online video and telephony meetings, improving the overall online conference experience.
We’re excited to work closely with the Limes Audio team to introduce new solutions that offer our customers the best online voice quality on the market.
Welcome Limes Audio!