Does Google have all the answers?

Does Google have all the answers

I was prompted to think about google today after seeing the wonderful infographic of Google below. (thanks to Larry Ferlazzo for so often letting me know about these things!).

I began thinking of my own relationship with Google. They reach everywhere into my teaching and because I really don’t draw a line, my LIFE.  If I know something really well concerning technology – it is probably Google.

Of course I search and use their RSS reader. But I also use Gtalk and of course they are number one with translations – even during chat! I use Picasa web for sharing and presenting photos! I sometimes checkout the Google to pay for things. I also find so many great “out of print” books on Googlebooks.  I watch youtube videos and use them in class. I share and group edit with Docs. I also check up on my websites stats with Analytics. I’ve recently been using Chrome to browse on my laptop. I also use feedburner for making RSS feeds. Google Earth and maps gives the geographer in me fits of rapture. When I’m in a creative and frisky mood – I find all the inspiration possible at Google Labs.

There are some things I don’t use that are part of google universe. iGoogle doesn’t cut it for me. Also, the Buzz only annoys me. Adwords only annoys me and I never click on them nor will ever adopt Adsense. Doesn’t make sense / cents  in education. I’ve ridden the Wave. Google Wave I’ve had prolific debates about with others – I really don’t get it either and though the idea is good – it is a dud. But that’s about it, I use a helluva lot more google products than I don’t!

The proper question to me is – “What don’t I use google for?”.

I’ve used and highlighted Google in a lot of my teaching.  Check out this site where you can make a Google font like logo to help contextualize your classroom instruction. COOL. (and that is the secret of the gOOgle logo, the two “OO”s which look like eyes watching you….).  I’ve also made a wonderful presentation of Google logos that you can use as a quiz.

Does Google have all the answers? I’d like to know your opinion.  Raul Midon in this cool video/TED talk, asks that question. Get the cool Karaoke version I made for instruction / learning English.

Wow, google is everywhere in my life. How about yours? What do they mean to you? To your students?

Google Infographic

Google Infographic

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ddeubel

Teacher trainer, technology specialist, educational thinker...creator of EFL Classroom 2.0, a social networking site for thousands of EFL / ESL teachers and students around the world.

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4 Responses

  1. Yeah, I could claim to be a fairly active netizen in the Google Universe as well. Gmail is by far and away the best email service I’ve ever experienced; I use Gtalk a lot for my online teaching (both the audio-only and video versions) – mainly because it integrates so smoothly with my Gmail account; I’m a big user of (and sometime contributor to) YouTube; I love Google Earth; I organise my business and schedule using Google Calendar; I use adsense on some of my sites (making small but regular income) and occasionally use adwords for some targeted advertising of my online teaching services; I often use Google translation; and Google is my default search browser.

    Like you, however, I find iGoogle and Buzz just plain annoying. I got turned off the Documents applications some time ago (and was majorly pissed off when they bought out and promptly shut down Etherpad purely to write off potential competition), and I prefer Flickr over Picasa. I tried Wave and found it interesting, but overwhelming. I also stick to Paypal over Google Checkout.

    So is Google an integral part of my business and personal life? It would be safe to say “yes” – though I don’t partake of absolutely everything they bring to their veritable smorgasbord.

    For educational purposes, I quite like it, because Google applications are readily accessible and comprehensible to so many of my students, irrespective of location/nationality (with some notable exceptions like China!).

    I can’t quite bring myself to label Google the evil empire. While it is helping me to get things done effectively and efficiently, without costing me anything, I don’t mind the fact that it is getting incredibly rich.

    The only exception is when they do things like the Etherpad takeover. If they don’t have their own product ready to go yet, it’s annoying and sinister when they buy out and shut down perfectly useful applications just to clear out competition before they’re even ready to roll with their own alternative.

    Loved the infographic, by the way! There’s a week’s worth of lesson material right there!

    Seeya round, DD.

    ~ J

  2. ddeubel says:

    Jason,

    Thanks for the reply and very interesting to see how you use Google and how similar/different it is to my own use.

    I don’t think of Google negatively either – though I know some who do. I really believe in most cases, they are making “a good fight” and creating access to basic but comprehensive online tools for many who otherwise wouldn’t have it .

    Yeah, I don’t get Buzz – maybe someone else can fill me in what its supposed to be about…I really think Google just came at this too late, as an afterthought. Not their normal approach and they’d of been better to just leave this social networking stuff alone.

    Cheers,
    David

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