Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Use templates to create files in the Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides mobile apps

Reblogged from Google Apps Updates

Templates allow you to quickly and easily create files with specific purposes—for instance, you can pull together a project proposal in Google Docs, an invoice in Google Sheets, or a case study in Google Slides without spending unnecessary time or resources on formatting. In September, we launched templates in Docs, Sheets, and Slides on the web; today, we’re rolling out that same functionality for their corresponding Android and iOS apps.

Starting now, when you go to create a new document, spreadsheet, or presentation on your Android or iOS device (by clicking the red “+” button in the bottom right corner of your screen), you’ll be given the option to choose a template. These templates will be the same as those available to you in Docs, Sheets, and Slides on the web, including a meeting agenda, pitch deck, expense report, and more.



Focus on your content, not your formatting. Check out the Help Center article below for more information on getting started with templates.

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

Rollout pace:
Gradual rollout (potentially longer than 3 days for feature visibility)

Impact:
All end users

Action:
Change management suggested/FYI

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

View functions in Google Sheets in your preferred language

Reblogged from Google Apps Updates

Employees across the world use Google Sheets. Starting today, any user whose preferred language is set to English or one of 21 additional, supported languages will see functions in Sheets on the web and mobile in that preferred language. (Please note that some specific functions will continue to appear in English only—even if the user’s preferred language is supported.)
Localized Functions.png
Following this launch, new Sheets users will see functions in their preferred language if that language is supported. Any existing Sheets user whose preferred language is supported will be given an option in Sheets on the web to keep their functions in English or to show them in their preferred language. If they choose the latter, they can switch back to English at any time by selecting Always use English function names underSpreadsheet settings in the File menu.
Localized Functions 2.png
Check out the Change a spreadsheet's locale, time zone, recalculation, and language Help Center article for a list of supported languages, as well as the additional articles below for more information.

Launch Details
Release track:
Launching to Rapid release, with Scheduled release coming on January 11th, 2016

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

Impact:
All end users

Action:
Change management suggested/FYI

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Chromebook Live Laoag!

Last November 27th, the Bluekore team went to Laoag City to conduct a seminar to showcase Google Chromebooks. This short seminar consisted of attendees given a chance to try out Chromebooks and see what makes it special in a school setting.

The seminar was conducted in Northwestern University and with this, we give special thanks to Ms. Angelica Hernando and the NWU team for sponsoring our venue.

Ms. Angelica Hernando of Northwestern University

Educators from different schools in Laoag City attended the Chromebook Live event and our team was truly excited to meet and connect with them!
The registration proceeded quickly using Chromebooks to check our attendees in.
The program proper consisted of an overview of Google Apps for Education, Google Classroom, Chromebooks, Chromebook Management Console, and the Chrome Web Store

Mary Manzano, Google for Education Trainer, giving a rundown of educational apps that may be installed from the Chrome Web Store.
A teacher taking a look at one of the apps in the Web Store.

The white Acer Chromebook 13 Touchscreen is of special interest. 
Chromebooks are fast, secure, simple to manage, and a fairly inexpensive solution to schools. No wonder it bags the number 1 spot in the US when it comes to devices being used in the classroom. The Bluekore team's goal is to ensure that schools in the Philippines are given that same choice and review Chromebooks as part of their device strategy for 2016.

Thank you to all those who attended!

Chromebook Live Laoag !
The Bluekore team

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The Chromebook Live events is a series of awareness events conducted by Bluekore Inc., an Authorized Chromebook Reseller in the Philippines.
Interested in bringing Chromebooks to your school or division? Email us at googleteam@bluekoreinc.com

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Innovation in the classroom

This year, I had a chance to ponder upon what makes a school innovative.

In speaking with different educators in Philippine schools, I was met with different views on technology. On one hand, we have the schools who will not wait for better bandwidth to arrive in order for them to start making improvements in technology. On the other hand, we have the schools who will go for tried and tested methods and conservative means to educate the kids of today.

I always wondered which was the more effective method, if there was one, and so I decided to reflect upon my own education and the teachers and mentors that made the most impression to me. The teachers that I remember the most were the ones that tried something different - the ones that taught lessons in unexpected ways, the ones that led me to discover things on my own, the ones that taught me to overcome my fear of the unknown.

In teaching me to think for myself and to learn with my teachers, I was given the necessary tool to survive the challenges of a more technologically advanced future.
Excitement and Curiosity. It didn’t matter that there were always new tools or new gadgets to use; I was always excited to try them out.

The result is the ability to keep up with the changing times. And for an educator, training this ability in our students is very important. The leaps in technology are such that we have no idea how fast information exchange will be tomorrow.

So, fear not.

Delving into technology, using digital resources (free or otherwise), trying out cloud services, using video instead of books sometimes - these are not things to be feared. They are there to be explored. Wake up the adventurer, the student, in you.

Take a look at this Google Classroom video last year, and pay attention to Sister Rosemarie deLoro, who said that you cannot stay in teaching and keep going back to the old ways.

I love to hear of educators who in spite of the challenges like slow internet, or minimal budget, can still find ways to innovate in the classroom. These educators must have had great teachers themselves.

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If you are innovating in the classroom now, we’d love to hear your story. And if you are interested to innovate, but have questions holding you back, share them with us! Our team would like to help.

Add to-dos to Google Calendar using Reminders

Reblogged from Google Apps Updates

Calendars are great for keeping track of what's next and to-dos are great for keeping track of what needs to get done. But we often manage them separately, so it's hard to see everything that’s going on and prioritize what's important.

Starting today, people using the Google Calendar Android and iOS apps can now create Reminders to keep track of their to-dos alongside their events. Here’s how it works:

Reminders help with the details
Reminders can be created the same way as an event„Ö°by tapping the red Create icon (“+”) in the bottom right corner of the screen. Calendar can then add things like phone numbers and addresses automatically„Ö°using information from your contacts, as well as Google's knowledge graph, to provide a bit of extra help.

Reminders stick around
While events come and go, Reminders stick with you over time so you can track them until they are actually done. If a Reminder isn't completed, it will appear at the top of your Calendar the next day. And all it takes is a quick swipe when you're done.
13_Swipe.gif

Reminders work across Google
In addition to Calendar, you can add and view Reminders from a variety of Google apps: Inbox by Gmail (for any Apps customers in the early adopter program), Google Keep and Google Now. This makes it easy to add a Reminder to your Calendar when you're checking your email or only have time to create a quick note.

People can start creating Reminders today with the latest versions of Calendar on Google Play and the App Store. And don't worry, we're working on bringing Reminders to the web too.

Check out the Help Center for more information.

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

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

Impact: 
All end users

Action:
Change management suggested/FYI

Friday, December 4, 2015

What's new with Chromebox for meetings?

Reblogged from Google Apps Updates

Chromebox for meetings brings high-quality video conferencing to any room. To help Google Apps customers who use Chromebox for meetings devices stay on top of new feature releases and improvements, starting today we’ll provide a regular recap of recent and upcoming launches. Today’s update coincides with the release of Chrome OS 47 stable, and we will continue to post updates moving forward following the Chrome OS six week release cycle. 

Guest Access
Google Hangouts now supports meeting participants who do not have Google accounts.

Various Performance Optimizations
  • Improved WebRTC to reduce audio echoing and optimize performance on Hangouts.
  • Faster HD resolution, smoother video rendering, and OPUS codec for improved audio quality on CfM.
  • Screenshare improvements for faster updates for complex on-screen changes.

Admin Email Notifications

We recently launched the ability for domain administrators to be notified when a Chromebox for meetings device goes offline, either by email or SMS. There is a known issue on being notified after scheduled reboots, and we are actively working on resolving it.

On-screen Volume Control
In addition to using the buttons on the speaker/mic, it is now possible to adjust the volume using on-screencontrols that have been added to the user interface of Chromebox for meetings.


Launch Details 
Release track: 
All features launched to both Rapid release and Scheduled release; Performance optimization improvements require an upgrade to Chrome 47. Chrome 47 will roll out automatically over the next week for customers who have auto updates turned on.

Impact: 
All end users, plus the admin-only email notification feature

Action:
Admin action suggested/FYI

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Increased account security via OAuth2 token revocation

Reblogged from Google Apps Updates

In an effort to further increase account security for Google Apps users, a recent change has been made to oursecurity policy, whereby OAuth2 tokens issued for access to certain products will now be revoked when a user's password is changed. For example, if a user loses their device, and changes their Google password, their mail and other data will stop syncing to that device when the password is reset.

Token revocation itself is not a new feature, as users have always had the ability to revoke access to applications in Security Checkup, and admins have always had this ability in the Google Apps Admin console. This change in our security policy will simply automate the token revocation process. 

What products are impacted?
Any application or device sync functionality that uses the OAuth2 authentication method will stop accessing data upon password reset until a new OAuth2 token has been granted by the user by re-authenticating with their Google account username and password. This includes Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Apps Sync for Microsoft Outlook (GASMO), and applications that use certain Google APIs. 

For a list of impacted data endpoints and scopes, and any known products that may not sync properly following the policy change, please check out the Help Center

In the future, we plan to expand the list of Google products and scopes for which tokens will be revoked upon password change, and will provide more details as they become available.

How will this impact Google Apps users?
If you have a corporate policy that requires your end users to change their passwords periodically, we recommend letting them know that they will also have to re-authenticate on their mobile devices, or any applications that they may be using to access Google Apps.

All password changes, such as an end user changing a password, or an admin changing the password on behalf of the end user―or even using tools such as Google Apps Password Sync or other Directory API client applications―will result in OAuth2 tokens being revoked.


Launch Details
Release track:  
Policy change will impact apps/device syncing for both Rapid release and Scheduled release tracks for all password changes starting December 10, 2015

Rollout pace: 
Gradual rollout (potentially longer than 3 days for feature visibility)

Impact: 
All end users


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Easier user management in the Google Admin mobile app for Android

Reblogged from Google Apps Updates

The Google Admin mobile app allows Apps super admins to easily manage users and groups, contact support, view audit logs and perform other common administrative tasks all from their mobile devices. 

Today’s update to the Google Admin mobile app for Android makes managing users and groups even easier with the following new features:

Add users from contact list
When adding a new user, Apps super admins can now simply import a contact from their contact list and have all of their information pre-populated in the ‘Add user’ form. The information can then be edited as needed, and the user can be quickly created. 
2015-11-10-165446_540x960_scrot.png
Quickly change roles and remove members 
When viewing member information inside of a group, it’s now possible for super admins to quickly change a member’s role or remove them from the group altogether.
2015-11-10-165534_540x960_scrot.png

Check out the Help Center links below for more information on the Google Admin app for Android.

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

Rollout pace: 
Gradual rollout (potentially longer than 3 days for feature visibility)

Impact: 
Admins only

Action:
Admin action suggested/FYI