As many of you know, I am a huge Google fangirl (Yes I realize that I have a WordPress blog instead of blogger. That is because I prefer WordPress and I don’t like to choose something based on the name alone…).
With that being said, Google has some pretty awesome things going on. A fellow classmate of mine presented on Google Doc this past week and I thought I would share what I know, along with what I learned! I am narrowing this down to things that will help you do group work and whatnot. So I hope this is beneficial for you!
Google Drive (Formerly Google Docs)
Drive has some great features for students (really anyone who needs to do group work). For instance, if you don’t have Microsoft Word you can use Drive and create a ‘document’. It can be saved in .doc or .rtf formats (there may be others but I am not positive). You can also create presentations, spreadsheets, forms, and use a “Paint” like program. The best part of all of these things is that they are easily shared and edited by groups. Here is how:
- Create Document
- Input data
- Hit “File” then “Share”
- Then choose how you would like to share (Email, social media, etc)
- Change how the other users can use this document (e.g. Can they edit or just view?)
- Hit “Done”
- Now all the other users can view and edit the info!
HANGOUTS! Yes Hangouts! This feature is amazing! Oh yeah, the other stuff is good too but I am pretty sure you have tried playing with the typical G+ stuff like creating circles and posting info. I personally prefer G+ over Facebook but sadly all my friends are “used to using” Facebook and don’t want to make the switch. Which is fine because there are tons of “professionals” using it (Like Librarians and my super geeks!) so it isn’t too bad. I digress.
The hangouts are awesome for several reasons.
- It’s free
- You can live stream the info through YouTube (Google owns YouTube in case you were curious)
- You can use it on your phone (so for you Apple people, it is like Face Time if you have a forward facing camera on your phone)
- You can chat face to face with up to 9 group members
Here is an example of how Librarians are using Hangouts. American Libraries has created a Live event with 9 episodes planned over the next year on various topics ranging from “Landing your ideal library job” to “Digging into new databases”. Check it out! I looks quite promising!
But G+ isn’t just about Hangouts, it has other great features. There are too many to cover in one post so I may just slowly add them to the blog throughout the year. Maybe I will even make tutorials for you…who knows. 😉
I love the Calendar feature. Like all things Google they allow you to share your calendar with selected people. For instance I share a calendar with my husband so that we can both see what the other has planned for the day. This way his dental appointments or my volunteer hours don’t sneak up on each other.
It also allows you to set reminders via email or text for any event. I like to have a reminder sent via text 1 hour before any meeting I have so that even if I forgot about the meeting I can still make it no matter where I am in town. Or I set a 1 week notice for presentations I have to give and really the list can go on.
Do you have any Google features that you love? What are they and how do you use them? I would love to hear about it! Comment away!