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Google is such a massive corporation now that it’s difficult to keep track of everything happening with it. While big announcements like the new Google Photos make the news, there’s plenty that slips under the radar.
It’s possible that you know about some of these new Google apps, but chances are that you never saw them. It’s not too late to check them out. From virtual tourism around the earth to a way to make GIFs from data, Google has plenty up its sleeve.
1. Data GIF Maker: A Fun Way to Show Data
While following the results of any election, you must have noticed how the percentage graph on the screen jostles between the two sides before settling on the final number. Now you can make that for any data.
Google’s Data GIF Maker is a fun way to show a data comparison between two things. A normal representation of the data would be a rectangular bar with each side’s percentage filled a certain color. The Data GIF Maker will land on that in the end, but it adds a little pizzaz to the whole thing. The two colors will fight with each other, go up and down a bit, and finally settle on the values you wanted.
It’s not earth-shattering technology, but it makes presentations more lively. Plus it’s ridiculously simple to make a chart. Add the header names for both columns, add values, and a description of what it’s all about. Data GIF Maker will do the rest. This could make for an excellent reaction GIF when you need it.
2. Google Earth Voyager: An New Travel Experience
Google launched a new version of one of its most popular apps, Google Earth. The new Google Earth is completely browser-based and needs Chrome to work.
The best feature of the new Google Earth is Voyager, which gives you immersive stories about certain places on our planet. For example, in a partnership with BBC Earth, you can check out some of the best deserts, complete with additional photos, videos, and text. It’s an incredible way to virtually travel the world.
There are over 50 immersive stories in Voyager already. My favorite is the new Voyager tour for Beatlesmaniacs. What about you?
3. Bubbles With Google: The Internet At Its Best
Not everything on the internet has to be offer practical utility. Sometimes, the greatest use the internet can have is a reminder of how it connects you to so many people across the world.
Bubbles With Google is a social experiment. It’s about showing you how many people are on the same site as you, from across the world. Visit g.co/bubbles on your phone or desktop, and a ticker on the left shows new people joining in. Meanwhile, you keep hopping to new places lighting up on the map of the earth.
It’s all presented as a surreal view of looking at Google Maps through water bubbles. The bubbles keep blowing, people keep joining, and the map keeps taking you to different cities. It’s oddly satisfying and calming.
4. Fact Check by Google News
Fake news is the scourge of the internet these days. What do you do when you can’t rely on the news that you read? Keep an eye out for Google’s Fact Check for News.
Fact Check has now rolled out worldwide. Here’s how it works. There are a bunch of fact-checking sites to verify the truth. Much like Google publishes news from media organization, Google will now publish a “fact check” by these truth-verifying sites under the news item. This fact check will appear under the headline for the news you are reading.
This isn’t going to be available for every news item on Google News. It would need to be a news event that has been fact-checked by a site like Snopes or Politifact. It’s a step in the right direction nonetheless.
5. NSynth: Invent New Sounds With Artificial Intelligence
Can robots make music? Google is trying to answer that with NSynth, a fascinating look into how music and sound can evolve with machines.
Here’s what’s happening. NSynth has “learnt” the sounds of 300,000 instruments. Normally, when you ask a computer to play a cello and a flute in the same note, it will play both instruments simultaneously. But if you ask NSynth to do that, it makes a hybrid sound of the cello and the flute. It’s creating a new type of sound!
You can fiddle around with all the different instruments that NSynth has learnt. There’s a basic piano for you to hit different notes. You can even adjust how much “sound” of each instrument is being used. So it’s not really NSynth creating the new sounds — it’s you.
If you liked NSynth, check out some of the other amazing Google AI experiments to explore artificial intelligence.
Do You Trust Google?
There is so much happening at Google right now, from self-driving cars to something as simple as blowing bubbles. But through it all, there’s a fear of privacy, and the ever-present question: how much does Google know about you?
How much do you trust Google?
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