Great Free Google Stuff

Click this link for instructions about how to set up a free Google account.

Note: West Liberty University students and employees already have Google accounts using their e-mail login names and passwords.


In addition to its search engine, Google provides an impressive collection of free software and on-line resources.

 

Free Software from Google
 

Google Drive

Associated Web Site: https://drive.google.com

URL: After logging onto Google G-mail, click the link at the top of the screen.

The user may create Google Documents online including word processing documents, forms, spreadsheets, drawings, and on-line PowerPoint style presentations.

In addition, one may upload or download files from any connected device. A desktop application is available for the PC and applications are available for smartphones and tablets so that individuals may access Google drive from any of those devices via the Internet.

 

Google Earth  -

Download Site: http://www.google.com/intl/en/earth/index.html

Google Earth provides satellite photos, street maps, street level photos, user provided landmarks and photos, aerial photos of some areas, and an impressive array of other information. No other similar resource exists.  In addition to the PC software, a free Google Earth application is available for smart phones.

 

Picasa -

Download Site: http://picasa.google.com

Picasa is a great downloadable photo organizer and editor. When it first runs, it finds and indexes every photo and most of the videos on the computer hard drive. As new pictures are added, the index is updated. In addition, Picasa finds and isolates all of the faces in the photos so that the user can label them thereby making the photos searchable by name. The Picasa photo editor includes basic fixes such as color correction and image cropping. The automatic red eye correction is exceptional.
 
Picasa Web Albums
Use this resource to upload and share photos via Picasa

 

Google Chrome -

Download Site: http://pack.google.com

Google Chrome web browser is an alternative to Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, etc.

 

Google Web Resources
 
Google Books
Huge collection of full text books.

 

Google Maps -

URL: http://maps.google.com/

This web site provides satellite images and street maps as well as other map related resources for users. The Smart phone application uses the GPS function in the phone to provides satellite navigation information.

 

Picnik

URL: http://www.picnik.com

Picnik is an on-line photo editor. It includes a variety of imaging editing tools. Modified images can easily be saved or shared on-line. Picnik is a new addition to Google.

 

Gmail Member Resources

 

Note from Earl:

If you are a member of the West Liberty University community with a WLU e-mail address, I recommend that you establish a separate Gmail account with a different user name and password. Use your new e-mail logon for posting items to YouTube and for accessing Google Reader. Use your WLU e-mail logon for Google Documents, Google Sites, and Google Calendar.

 

YouTube -

URL: http://www.youtube.com/

You can use your Google G-mail logon information to log onto YouTube. After logging onto YouTube, you will be able to upload your videos to the site for free. Be sure to read and follow the YouTube posting guidelines.

 

Google Reader

URL: From the Google home page, you can access Google Reader under the “More” menu. Although your WLU e-mail information may be used, I recommend using your new Gmail account to log onto Google Reader.

Google Reader allows you to subscribe to RSS or ADAM web feeds.(Podcasts)

Reader supports text, audio, and video podcasts making it an excellent feed reader.

 

Google Sites

URL: From the Google home page, you can access Google Sites under the “More” menu.

Google Sites provides an opportunity for users to create their own free web pages. While at WLU, users should log onto Google Sites using the WLU logon information.

Google Sites allows the user to create a website with unique site name and URL. The site construction interface is somewhat awkward, but the service is free and the resulting web site is not cluttered with advertising as most other free web site hosts.

 

Google Calendar -

URL: After logging onto the WLU e-mail, click the link at the top of the screen.

The Google Calendar service allows one to create multiple calendars which can be shared with other users. If created after logging onto WLU e-mail, then the WLU directory is linked making on-campus collaboration very easy. A function is provided via a small download which will synchronize the Google calendar with the user’s calendar in Outlook. The download site is: http://www.google.com/support/calendar/bin/answer.py?answer=89955
A free application for smartphones will also synchronize the Google calendar with the smartphone calendar. Thus, changes made on the phone, on Outlook, and on Google are all automatically shared with all three calendars.

  

Word Processing

The Google Documents word processor is very simple and bare bones compared to the likes of MS word, but it can be shared and used collaboratively by users in different parts of the world. Other word processing documents are easily uploaded into the collaborative document and exporting the document to Word or any other word processor is easy.

 

Spreadsheets and Forms

Users are easily able to create a survey form using a variety of templates and built-in features. A URL is provided for the completed form. The URL can be shared via e-mail or on a web page. The URL is compatible with social networking sites like Facebook. The results of the survey appear on a full featured spreadsheet which can be exported to Excel. Excel spreadsheets can also be imported. The sharing feature is also active with the spreadsheet function. Note: use the FLUBAROO script to have Google Forms score questions thereby creating online tests and quizzes.

 

Google Presentations

The Presentation tool provides a simple PowerPoint-style presentation format which works well for linear presentations. Existing PowerPoint presentations or individual slides from existing presentations may be uploaded into the Google Presentation. The sharing option also provides a collaborative function for Google Presentations. A URL is generated for viewing the completed presentation as a slide show.
 

Google Calendar

After logging onto Google Gmail, click the calendar link at the top of the page and create a personal calendar. If you want, you can create multiple calendars. Then, click the link marked “Offline” at the top left side of the page. After downloading the software, you will be able to automatically sync your Google Calendar with your Outlook Calendar. The Google Calendar app for the smart phone will also synch the calendar with your phone. Any change that you make to the calendar on the phone or computer or on-line will be automatically shared with all three!

 

Google APPS User Group: http://www.appsusergroup.org/ - Huge resource for teachers with lots of tools for educators.

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