Refreshments: Gail Benton, Nancy Sjoberg, Rose Terenzi, Terri McIvor, Louise Anders, Jim Kaehler and also thanks to Jim Kaehler for set-up

Visitors:  Bill Pagan, Wayne Smith, Lorraine Smith, Georges Kaufman, Joe Givers, Bill Schneider, and Mary Lou Raterman
Door Prize Winner:
Jerry Timen
Winners of Smart Computing Magazine Subscriptions:  Lorraine Smith, David Henry, Katie Kotecha, Joe Givers and Jerry Timen

Today’s program, presented by Jay Hall, was all about Google and the many things we can do with it.  Jay has taught several courses on Google through the OLLI program and keeps abreast of the new features the company is constantly developing.

Google Search: Enter any mathematical equation in the search box and Google will solve it.  Enter a quote in the search box and find the author and the complete piece of literature.  Click on the “I’m feeling lucky” box and Google takes you to the most popular site in its index.  Google uses a mathematical algorithm to determine how frequently people search for a particular site.  When a list of links is generated by Google, sometimes the first several are highlighted.  This means they are paid or sponsored links.  “Cache,” at the end of a link means this is the older version of the website which Google has retained.  There are some web sites that Google cannot index and sometimes a flag can be put in the pages to turn the search off.  Therefore, these pages will not turn up in the list of sites when a Google search is performed.

Google Scholar:  When searching for scholarly articles that have been peer reviewed, abstracts, scientific papers etc., use Google Scholar.

Gmail:  Google’s e-mail system is organized differently.  Instead of sorting messages into folders, they are tagged and sorted by labels.  Google provides 25 gigs free storage, and up to 200 gigs storage can be purchased for $50.00 per year so you don’t have to worry about constantly deleting messages.  If you purchase the extra storage, Google gives you a card to insert into your digital camera which will automatically geostamp your photos for free (a way to identify where the photo was taken using GPS coordinates).

Google Calendar:  Invitations can be sent out to people and the answer, yes or no, goes back to your mailbox.  Also messages can be sent to your phone.

Google Docs:  This is a free application and all sorts of documents can be created—word processing, presentations like Power Point, spreadsheets.  You can import a Microsoft Word document into Google Docs.  A document can be stored out on Google and other individuals can have access and edit it.

Google Books:  Google has agreements with over 200 libraries to make electronic copies of books for the public to download.  In many cases the copyright has expired and sometimes  authors have agreed to share the books.

Google Toolbar:  Has a pop-up blocker and can access g-mail and other features from the toolbar.

Google Translate:  This free online translation service supports many languages.

Google Voice:  Voice messages on the telephone can be changed into text messages.  If you have several different phone numbers, they can all be transferred to one telephone.

Google Patents:  A patent search can be conducted here.

Google Sketch-Up:  Free software is available for creating and modifying 3 dimensional models.

Google Labs:  This is the place where certain people can try out new some of the newest features of Google that are still in the testing stage.

Google Chrome:  This is the new Google browser.  Although fast, some people like Mozilla Firefox better as it has more add-ons and is more secure.

Google encourages creativity by giving employees one day per week to work on work on any idea they want.  The company is continually developing new applications.

Submitted by Gail Benton

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