Additional safeguards to protect the quality of our ad network

Supporting a healthy ads ecosystem that works for publishers, advertisers, and users continues to be a top priority in our effort to sustain a free and open web. As the ecosystem evolves, our ad systems and defenses must adapt as well. Today, we’d like to highlight some of our efforts to protect the quality of our ad network, and the benefits to our publishers and the advertising ecosystem.  Last year, we introduced a site verification process in AdSense to provide additional safeguards before a publisher can serve ads. This feature allows us to provide more direct feedback to our publishers on the eligibility of their site, while allowing us to communicate issues sooner and lessen the likelihood of future violations. As an added benefit, confirming which websites a publisher intends to monetize allows us to reduce potential misuse of a publisher's ad code, such as when a bad actor tries to claim a website as their own, or when they use a legitimate publisher's ad code to serve ads on bad content in an attempt to demonetize the good website — each day, we now block more than 120 million ad requests with this feature.  This year, we’re enhancing our defenses...

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New tools to help Spanish speakers build their careers

Spanish is my first language, and it’s what I spoke with my family growing up in Costa Rica. Even today, after making the U.S. my home for more than two decades, it’s the language my brain thinks in. So I understand well the challenges of living in a country where the spoken language is your second language, or even completely new to you. Especially for those trying to get ahead—taking classes, learning new skills, finding work—it can be really hard. That’s why I’m thrilled that today, through Grow with Google , our initiative to create economic opportunity for everyone, we’re making new resources available to help Spanish speakers learn skills they need to prepare for a job or grow a business in today’s economy. For example, our Applied Digital Skills curriculum helps learners develop crucial digital skills to thrive in the workplace through free, video-based lessons. We also offer minicourses in Spanish for local businesses and job seekers on our free Google Primer app, which teaches business and digital marketing skills through short and easy interactive lessons. Our IT Support Professional Certificate , which is designed to prepare beginners for entry-level IT support jobs in as little as six months, will...

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“Lite” but packs a punch: Google Go comes to Android everywhere

Search Google Go hero Bibo Xu Product Manager, Google Go Published Aug 20, 2019 Google Go is a lightweight, fast app that helps you access information, both online and in the world around you, even with an unstable connection. It does this while using less storage and memory, helping your phone stay fast. Google Go has been available in a few countries and on Android (Go edition) devices since 2017, and starting today, it’s available on the Play Store worldwide.  Millions of people have already used Google Go to find information on the web and make sense of the world around them. But we know that people everywhere can sometimes struggle with spotty connections, phone storage, and reading or translating text. Reading made easier Earlier this year at I/O, we showcased Lens in Google Go, a way for you to read, translate and search the words you see by using your camera. When you find text you’d like help with, open Lens and point your camera at it to hear the words read out loud to you, translate them, or both. Some people would rather listen to content instead of reading on the web, especially if it’s lengthy. Google Go also offers...

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“Great Sporting Land” tours Australia’s sports-mad history

Arts and Culture “Great Sporting Land” tours Australia’s sports-mad history Suhair Khan Program Manager, Google Arts & Culture Published Aug 20, 2019 Australians have a passion for sports—so much that it was perfectly normal for the Prime Minister to give the entire country the day off when they won a boat race back in 1983. Over generations, Australia’s favorite pastimes have shaped the country’s identity, values and culture. Along with the Melbourne Cricket Club , Australian Football League , National Portrait Gallery and the North Bondi Surf Lifesaving Club , Google Arts & Culture is showcasing the people, moments and places that led Australia to become the “ Great Sporting Land ” it is today.  The exhibition features over 11,000 archived images and videos, and more than 100 original stories from more than 30 partners. To do so, Google’s Art Camera technology has been on a marathon between sporting institutions across the country to capture over 200 pieces of art, archival materials and artifacts in high resolution gigapixel quality. Bradman Museum Zoom into the details of Don Bradman’s original bat (held here by Steve Waugh). Fanny Durack Learn about the lives of Australian sporting pioneers and female icons, including Sarah “Fanny”...

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It’s time: Nest users can now switch to Google Accounts

Back in May, Nest and Google Home joined together as Google Nest to create a more helpful home . And now, the next step involves you: starting today, you can migrate your Nest account to a Google Account . It's easy to do and only takes a few minutes—here's what you need to know. Migrating to a Google Account gives you new benefits, like: Automatic security protections such as Suspicious activity detection, 2-Step Verification and Security Checkup. Your Google Nest devices and services will work together. For example, if you have a Nest Cam and a Chromecast, just say, "Hey Google, show me the backyard camera” to cast your camera stream to your TV without any additional setup. One account to sign into both the Nest and Google Home apps. Your homes and home members will be aligned across the Nest and Google Home apps. You’ll receive an email invitation from Nest to migrate, but if you’d like to migrate now, you can select the “Sign in with Google” option in the most recent version of the Nest app . If you already have a Google Account that you use to sign into Google Home, just select that account when migrating your Nest Account....

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By day and by night: video call, no matter the lighting

To make sure we’re constantly improving Google Duo, we visit people from around the world to understand the challenges they face in video calling their loved ones. There was one particular condition we saw people consistently struggle with across cultures and environments: poor lighting. In many places, electric lighting is a significant challenge, preventing people from connecting face to face. People often light their homes with a single bulb when electricity is expensive, and even then, power outages remain common in many areas, leaving people in the dark during the evening when many video calls with family and friends happen. Even when electricity is not an issue, many people just want to video call to say good night right before bed, keep each other company as they watch TV together or enjoy a quick chat while they’re outside in the evening.  These challenges are the reasons why we are bringing low light mode to Duo. Low light mode helps people connect with each other face to face, even when the lighting conditions aren’t optimal. The video call will adjust so people in the frame are more visible when the phone detects dim lighting. Low light mode will start rolling out globally...

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Tackling cardiovascular disease with AI

Westmead team with Google’s Mel Silva and Australian Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Hon Karen Andrews MP Heart disease and cardiovascular health are a major challenge around the world, and in Australia, one in six people is affected by cardiovascular disease. The University of Sydney’s Westmead Applied Research Centre is working on a digital health program for people at risk of cardiovascular disease, and they recently received a $1 million Google.org grant that will help them apply AI to give patients more personalised advice and support.   We sat down with Professor Clara Chow, Professor of Medicine and Academic Director at Westmead Applied Research Centre, and Dr. Harry Klimis, a cardiologist and Westmead PhD student, to hear more about the program.    Why is cardiac health such a big issue?  Professor Chow: Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of premature death and disability worldwide. In Australia, cardiovascular disease affects approximately 4.2 million people, has resulted in more than 1 million hospitalizations, and caused 1 in 3 deaths in 2016. That’s one death every 12 minutes, and these deaths are largely preventable. How are you proposing to address this problem?  Chow: Our goal is to support people at high risk of developing...

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What’s new in Chrome OS: better audio, camera and notifications

Chromebooks lifestyle Alexander Kuscher Director of Chrome OS Software Published Aug 15, 2019 Every Chromebook runs on Chrome OS, which updates every six weeks to keep your device speedy, smart and secure. Each Chrome OS update happens in the background, without interrupting what you’re doing. Here’s some of what’s new on Chromebook this August. Control your media in one place New media controls make it easier for you to pause or play sound from a tab or an app. Have you ever had dozens of tabs and apps open and struggled to turn off a specific tab’s audio? If so, we think you’ll find this change helpful—especially for those moments when you start watching a YouTube video and you want to quickly pause your music. Starting this month, you can open your system menu and see all of the tabs or apps on your Chromebook that are playing audio tracks and control them from one place. Take great photos on your Chromebook The Chromebook camera app has been updated to make taking photos and videos easier. Portrait mode is now available on Google Pixel Slate and we are working on bringing it to other Chromebooks. We’ve introduced an updated interface for...

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Explore college opportunities with new Search features

Search Girl on computer Sitaram Iyer Distinguished Engineer, Search Published Aug 15, 2019 Summer is winding down, and students across the country are heading back to the classroom. For many students in high school, it’s time to think about their next steps after graduation. While some students may have a certain school or cost considerations in mind, many others may not know where to start or what options are available to them. The college search feature we launched last year helps students get quick access to information about four-year U.S. universities, including acceptance rates, costs and student outcomes like graduation rates. As this year’s college search season kicks off, we’re expanding our college search features to include two-year colleges and popular certificate and associate programs available at four-year institutions. A new list feature makes it easier to discover a wide range of schools and explore different fields of study. Considering 2-year colleges When you use your mobile device to  search for any two-year college in the U.S, you’ll get information about the programs offered, cost of attendance and more. Because many community college students often stay close to home while enrolled in these programs, we show the in-state tuition, as well...

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When students get stuck, Socratic can help

Education Socratic by Google Shreyans Bhansali Engineering Manager, Socratic Published Aug 15, 2019 In building educational resources for teachers and students, we’ve spent a lot of time talking to them about challenges they face and how we can help. We’ve heard that students often get “stuck” while studying. When they have questions in the classroom, a teacher can quickly clarify—but it’s frustrating for students who spend hours trying to find answers while studying on their own.  Socratic , a mobile learning app we acquired last year, now uses AI technology to help high school and university students when they’re doing school work outside the classroom. It guides them through the resources that are available, and identifies the core underlying concepts that will lead them to answers to their questions. With the latest improvements, here are a few ways Socratic has become even more helpful for students. Get help at any moment Students can take a photo of a question or use their voice to ask a question, and we’ll find the most relevant resources from across the web.  If they’re struggling to understand textbook content or handouts, they can take a picture of the page and check out alternative explanations of...

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