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Editor’s note: Today’s guest blogger is Dawn Santone, Manager of Workflow and Technology Integration at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). CBC is Canada’s national public broadcaster and provides a range of radio, television, internet and satellite-based services. See how other forward-thinking organizations are investing in mapping technology and transforming their business: Maps are Going Google.


Canada didn't have a national team at the 2014 World Cup, but our crew at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation knew that wouldn’t stop Canadians from wanting to experience the tournament alongside the rest of the world. Who did our viewers root for? We created a SuperFan Map to spotlight our fans’ unique experiences as they enjoyed the frenzy and excitement in Brazil.

The idea for the SuperFan Map began with a Google Form that we used to survey our fans about their favorite teams. As we looked at their responses, we noticed the diversity of fans — across Canada and across the world. We used this geolocation data to drop pins on a map and visualize where our fans were located when they enjoyed games. We made the map even richer by pulling in photos and videos from Google+, Instagram and Twitter, curated using our #cbcworldcup hashtag.

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We knew we wanted to use Google to create the SuperFan Map. The turnaround was quick — we started using Google Maps Engine in the beginning of June and had our map up and running before the first game was played on June 12. It worked consistently, even during major matches and other spikes in traffic.

The map also connected our fans in a way that went far beyond sport alone: it created a sense of community, from coast to coast to coast in Canada, from Australia to Norway, and dozens of countries in between. We saw an incredible diversity of teams, geographies and faces surface on a single Google Map.

The SuperFan Map has helped us take engagement further by connecting with fans in real time. A cross-promotion with CBC Music connected our SuperFans with The Beetle Roadtrip Sessions traveling across Canada. We used the map to see where people were cheering, then invited them to celebrate with us. For instance, we held a giant party in Montreal after seeing a high concentration of fans in the area.

We’ve seen how Google Maps can help us better inform our organization and inform our fans about the events that matter to them, no matter where they happen in the world. Beyond helping us connect with our fans, Google Maps helped connect fans with one another.

Posted by Dawn Santone, ‎Manager of Workflow and Technology Integration, CBC

Reposted from the Google for Work blog.

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Work is where you spend a lot of your time. So we’ve always believed that it should be meaningful—not a daily grind, done in isolation on an old desktop in a sea of cubicles. Even more, we believe that technology should make work better. It should make it easy not just to get things done, but to get things done with people who inspire you, at the times and in the places where you work best, and in a way that lets you make an impact, no matter what your job is, or what industry you’re in.

Ten years ago, we started bringing Google’s consumer technology—along with the features, controls and services businesses need—to work. We first brought search and then Gmail to businesses. Today we also offer the scale and reliability of Google’s infrastructure to developers with Google Maps and Google Cloud Platform, and have extended into hardware with Android and Chromebooks. Along the way we’ve invested in what matters to our customers and partners—security, transparency, compliance and customer support. And our team, the breadth of our offerings, and our commitment to business customers have all increased substantially.

Work today is very different from 10 years ago. Cloud computing, once a new idea, is abundantly available, and collaboration is possible across offices, cities, countries and continents. Ideas can go from prototype to development to launch in a matter of days. Working from a computer, tablet or phone is no longer just a trend—it’s a reality. And millions of companies, large and small, have turned to Google’s products to help them launch, build and transform their businesses, and help their employees work the way they live. In other words, work is already better than it used to be.



But technology for the workplace isn't just about a better way of doing business. It's about empowering anyone, whether they're a developer with an idea in their basement or a baker with a better cupcake or a company with thousands of employees, to have an impact. We never set out to create a traditional “enterprise” business—we wanted to create a new way of doing work. So the time has come for our name to catch up with our ambition. As of today, what was called Google Enterprise is now, simply, Google for Work. When we use the tools that make our lives easier—Google Apps, Maps, Search, Chrome, Android, Cloud Platform and more—work gets better. And that’s what we’re working on—the best of Google, now for work.

Posted by Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman

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A few months ago I moved from Chicago to Canada to join the great team at Google Canada. In preparation for the big move, I used the web for everything from researching local real estate agents, to comparing local schools for my kids, to investigating where to get the perfect cup of coffee in my new neighbourhood. (Moving requires a lot of coffee!)

Like me, people everywhere use the Internet to discover the best of what’s around the corner or around the world. One of the most exciting things about the web is its ability to help small and medium-sized businesses connect with customers and grow.

Today we’re announcing the winners of our 2014 Canada eTown Awards, which range from rural, seaside communities to popular resort towns. In each of these ‘digital capitals,’ small businesses are using the web to grow and thrive in today’s increasingly connected world, and to contribute to the future economic growth of the country. In fact, according to the Boston Consulting Group, small and medium sized businesses with a web strategy experience revenue growth up to 22% higher compared to those who do not.



Take Whistler-based Superfly Ziplines as an example. The adventure company offers backcountry zipline and treetop courses to thrill-seeking visitors from Canada and around the world. However, Superfly had a problem: tourists were only learning about their services once they had arrived in Whistler, and at that point it was often too late for tourists to add Superfly to their trip itinerary. By developing a robust website, including dramatic video of their actual zipline and treetop courses, and investing in online advertising, Superfly succeeded in securing more reservations before visitors even touched down in the resort town - to the tune of an additional 3,200 visitors to their website in July 2014 alone.

We worked with independent research firm IPSOS to analyze the online strength of local businesses in cities and towns across Canada, and we’re proud to recognize five great Canadian communities with a 2014 Google eTown Award. These towns are receiving this award because of stories like Superfly Ziplines and other small businesses like Discover Banff Tours, Chester Playhouse, Clinique Vétérinaire Rosemère and from my new, adopted hometown of Oakville, Ontario, Never Grow Up and Trafalgar Village Dental.


2014 Google eTown Award Winners
Banff, Alberta
Chester, Nova Scotia
Oakville, Ontario
Rosemère, Quebec
Whistler, British Columbia


Congratulations to this year’s eTown winners! I hope these towns are an inspiration to cities and businesses everywhere of what can be accomplished by embracing the web.

Posted by Sam Sebastian, Managing Director, Google Canada

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Counting down to the start of classes this fall? Time is running out to get through the back-to-school checklist: confirming class schedule, getting new gear to decorate your dorm room, checking out school activities, and of course, buying textbooks. We can’t help with everything on your list, but we can lighten your load, literally.

Starting now, students in Canada can rent or purchase digital textbooks from play.google.com/textbooks. With thousands of textbooks from top publishers, we have a comprehensive selection of higher education titles from science and mathematics to history and English, and everything in between.

With Google Play Books, your textbook library is stored in the cloud and synced to your devices, giving you instant access to the titles you need, when you need them, on your Android tablet, phone, iOS device, or on the web. An overstuffed backpack is a thing of the past.


With the Google Play Books app, you have convenient tools at hand to make studying simpler and faster. You can instantly search within a textbook for a particular word or phrase, bookmark chapters and pages, highlight and annotate key passages and get quick access to dictionaries, translation tools, Wikipedia and Google search.



If you only need your textbooks for a semester or two, you can choose to rent any textbook on Google Play for six months and save up to 80% as compared to buying print textbooks.

Shop for textbooks today on Google Play, and learn more at our Google in Education site.

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When we introduced Classroom back in May, we asked educators to give it a try. The response was exciting — more than 100,000 educators from more than 45 countries signed up to try it. Today, we’re starting to open Classroom to all Google Apps for Education users, helping teachers spend more time teaching and less time shuffling papers.


The teachers of Ontario’s Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board were some of the first to use Classroom. Since May, Google Certified Teacher and WECDSB’s e-Learning expert Joe Sisco has used Classroom in professional development sessions with the Board’s educators. Joe says that teachers have found it incredibly easy to use: “It took about 5 minutes or less to create a class, have 30 teachers join the class, and push out a Google Drawing to have them sort images using a venn diagram.”


Teachers and students have been instrumental in helping us build Classroom. For example, we heard during the preview that educators don’t want to wait until an assignment is turned in to collaborate with students. Now with Classroom, teachers will be able to view and comment on students’ work to help them along the way. We’ve also heard that educators want a simple place to post information and materials about their classes, so we added an “About” page for each course as well.


Teachers can review assignments directly from Classroom and provide feedback and grades to students all in one place.

Starting today, Classroom is available in 42 languages (including Hebrew, Arabic and Persian). It also works well on mobile devices and most popular screen readers. We’ll be rolling out to more users every day, so if you go to classroom.google.com with your Apps for Education account and don’t have access yet, please check back soon!

Hopefully Classroom will help you spend a little less time at the photocopier and a little more time doing what you love—teaching.



Posted by Zach Yeskel, Product Manager, Classroom

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Whether you’re a university applicant or a curious parent getting to know your kid’s new home away from home, Street View can take you on a walking tour of schools around the world. Starting today, you’ll be able to explore 36 new university campuses across the U.S. and Canada with Street View in Google Maps.

With a click of your mouse, you can visit the University of Calgary, one of Canada's top research universities and alma mater of our 22nd Prime Minister Stephen Harper.



Our very own, Engineering Director, Stephen Woods completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.



Continuing along, visit University of Manitoba, Western Canada's first university, and home of the U of M Bison.


Finally, let’s stop by the University of Regina in Canada. Founded in 1911, the school is known for its emphasis on experiential learning.

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These Canadian universities in the prairies are some of the latest additions to the hundreds of college and university campuses all over the world that are already available for you to explore in Google Maps. To see if a Street View tour of your dream school is available, search for a particular university on Google Maps and click on Pegman to enter the Street View imagery. Visit our Street View gallery for global highlights and other popular universities around the world.

So if you can’t make it in person, Street View can help you get a feel for the place you’re considering spending the next four years. And for you parents out there, this might help you get used to the idea of an empty nest!

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Earlier this year we asked students around the world how they would change the world as part of the 4th annual Google Science Fair. Students from all over the world, including Canada, submitted incredibly creative and clever ideas tackling some of today’s biggest problems.

Congratulations to Hayley Todesco from Calgary and her project Waste to Water: Biodegrading Naphthenic Acids Using Novel Sand Bioreactors. Hayley was selected as the first-ever recipient of the Regional Science Fair Award in Canada. And today we’re announcing that Hayley is one of the 15 finalists invited to compete in the final Google Science Fair competition in September.

Next month, Hayley will be California-bound to compete at Google HQ for the Age Category Awards (ages 17-18 category) and of course, the overall Google Science Fair Grand Prize Award. The competition will end in style with an awards ceremony, which will be live streamed on the Science Fair YouTube channel and on the Google Science Fair website. Tune in to find out this year’s winners!

But first, Canada we need your help - pick your favorite project for the 2014 Voter’s Choice Award. Show your support for the finalists and cast a vote on the Google Science Fair website beginning September 1. Every year, we are blown away by the projects and ideas our young people come up with, and you will be too.


What’s next for our young Canadian scientist? Hayley plans to attend the University of Alberta, in the fall to complete a Bachelor of Science Honours degree in Microbiology. “My future academic goals also involve the PhD degree program after working alongside PhD students in labs during my projects.” says Hayley Todesco, “I would love a scientific research career in the field of biotechnology, specifically relating to environmental issues. After all, I couldn't imagine pursuing a better path than one that constantly fascinates me.”

Congratulations again Hayley, and good luck!