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Tools to help you vote in the EU elections

You probably turn to the web to get information about an election before casting your vote—and you want to get to the important stuff quickly, like learning more about your candidates and understanding how to cast your ballot. To help you find the information you need about the European Parliamentary elections, we’ve introduced a set of useful features across Search in the European Union.  Helping EU citizens find election information in SearchWhen you search for instructions for how to vote in your country, you now see those details right on the results page. We source this data directly fromthe European Parliament to ensure you get trusted information.Example of voting requirements that appear in SearchNew ways for candidates and parties to reach votersSupporting the electoral process also means helping voters learn more about their choices in the elections by providing accurate information about candidates, political parties, and their key priorities. The German Press Agency (dpa) provides us with information from electoral commissions in each EU country on candidates and parties running in the elections. This information appears within Knowledge Panels—dedicated spaces with key information about those parties and politicians when you search for their names.Candidates who claim their Knowledge Panels have been able to submit a brief statement outlining their electoral platform, a set of top three policy priorities, and links to relevant social media profiles. All is visible right inside the Knowledge Panel in the local language of the candidate. Political parties running in the EU elections are also able to claim ownership of their panels and use Posts on Google to provide updates in the form of videos, text, or event listings, again available right on Search.Bringing more transparency to election advertising onlineTo help people better understand the election ads they see online, earlier this year we outlined a new process to verify advertisers for the EU Parliamentary elections. These verified election ads also incorporate a clear “paid for by” disclosure. We recently launched our EU political advertising transparency report, which includes a library of election ads that appear across Google, YouTube and and partner properties. We’ve made this data downloadable, so researchers and journalists can easily use and analyze the content.With these tools, we hope that it will be easier to get the information you need in order to vote in the EU elections.

How artists use AI and AR: collaborations with Google Arts & Culture

For centuries, creative people have turned tools into art, or come up with inventions to change how we think about the world around us. Today you can explore the intersection of art and technology through two new experiments, created by artists in collaboration with the Google Arts & Culture Lab, only recently announced at Google I/O 2019.Created by artists Molmol Kuo & Zach Lieberman, Weird Cuts lets you make collages using augmented reality. You can select one of the cutouts shown in the camera screen to take a photo in a particular shape. The resulting cut-out can then be copy-pasted into the space around you, as seen through your camera’s eye. Download the app, available on iOS and Android, at g.co/weirdcuts.Weird cuts in action Want to design your very own artwork with AI? Artist duo Pinar & Viola and Google engineer Alexander Mordvintsev—best known for his work on DeepDream—used machine learning to create a tool to do so. To use Infinite Patterns, upload an image and a DeepDream algorithm will transform and morph it into a unique pattern. For Pinar & Viola it is the perfect way to find new design inspirations for fashion by challenging one’s perception of shape, color and reality.Infinite PatternsThese experiments were created in the Google Arts & Culture Lab, where we invite artists and coders to explore how technology can inspire artistic creativity. Collaborations at the Lab gave birth to Cardboard, the affordable VR headset, and Art Selfie, which has matched millions of selfies with works of art around the world.To continue to encourage this emerging field of art with machine intelligence, we’re announcing the Artists + Machine Intelligence Grants for contemporary artists exploring creative applications of machine learning. This program will offer artists engineering mentorship, access to core Google research, and project funding.Machine learning and artificial intelligence are greats tool for artists, and there’s so much more to learn. If you’re curious about its origins and future, dive into the online exhibition “AI: More than Human” by the Barbican Centre, in which some of the world’s leading experts, artists and innovators explore the evolving relationship between humans and technology.You can try our new experiments as well as the digital exhibition on the Google Arts & Culture app for iOS and Android.

A few new features to try on your next video call with Google Duo

Video calling on Duo helps you savor the moments with people who matter to you, and today we have a couple of updates that help you connect with loved ones and personalize your calls and messages.Video call with the whole familyNo need to play telephone, now up to eight people can catch up with group calling on Duo. Group calling is now available globally on both iOS and Android, and like all Duo calls and video messages, group calls are also encrypted end-to-end so your conversations stay private.Data Saving modeData can be costly, so in select regions including Indonesia, India, and Brazil, you can limit data usage on mobile networks and Wi-Fi on Android. If you turn on Data Saving mode in Settings, both you and the person you’re calling will save on data usage in video calls. Data saving mode will be rolling out to more markets in the coming months.Personalize video messagesVideo messages let you record a quick hello when you don’t have time to call or when the person you’re calling can’t pick up. Now on Android and coming soon to iOS, you can personalize video messages by adding text and emojis, or even drawing on your message using brushes.Ok, no more stalling. Time to pick up the phone to leave Mom a video message!

What’s for dinner? Order it with Google

French fries, lettuce wraps, massaman curry, chicken wings, cupcakes—I could go on. When I was pregnant with my son last year, my cravings were completely overpowering. Lucky for me, I didn’t have to jump into the car and go to my favorite restaurants to get my fill—food delivery services saved my bacon on more occasions than I’d be comfortable admitting to the world.Ever since then, I’ve counted myself as one of the millions of people who regularly order food for home delivery. Starting today, we’re making it even easier to get food delivered to your doorstep.Find food and order fasterNow you can use Google Search, Maps or the Assistant to order food from services like DoorDash, Postmates, Delivery.com, Slice, and ChowNow, with Zuppler and others coming soon. Look out for the “Order Online” button in Search and Maps when you search for a restaurant or type of cuisine. For participating restaurants, you can make your selections with just a few taps, view delivery or pickup times, and check out with Google Pay.  Let the Google Assistant handle dinnerTo use the Assistant on your phone to get your food fix, simply say, “Hey Google, order food from [restaurant].” You can also quickly reorder your go-to meal with some of our delivery partners by saying, “Hey Google, reorder food from [restaurant].” The Assistant pulls up your past orders, and in just a few seconds, you can select your usual dish.Search UpdatedOrder food for delivery or pickup across Search, Maps and the Assistant in thousands of cities across the US.AssistantSelect your food and check out in the Assistant with just a few taps.reorder gifAsk your Google Assistant for help reordering your favorite meals when you’re on the go.Now's the perfect time to let Google help with your cravings. So, what are we ordering tonight?

Tag Manager: Introducing Custom Templates

Google Tag Manager and Tag Manager 360 help you more easily and safely deploy tags for all your marketing and measurement tools. Security and collaboration features give IT teams more control over the tagging process, while features like auto-event triggers and built-in templates help marketers get the data they need without having to deal with code.For scenarios where the built-in templates don’t cover your needs, we also offer options to deploy your own custom HTML and JavaScript. To help protect the security of your users and sites, we already scan all custom HTML tags for malware. Developers can also choose to blacklist custom scripts directly on page. But, we want to help make tagging even safer.Today, we’re introducing Custom Templates—a new set of features in Tag Manager and Tag Manager 360 to give you more transparency and control over the tags on your site.With Custom Templates, you can use a built-in Template Editor to design tag and variable templates that can be used throughout your container.This means that less technical users can manage instances of your custom tags just like the built-in tags, without messing with code. (Custom Templates will show up alongside the built-in templates when you go to add a new tag or variable.) And, since you can write your template once and reuse it, less code will need to be loaded on your site.Template permissionsIn order to provide a safer execution environment for your tags, Custom Templates use a sandboxed version of JavaScript. With sandboxed JavaScript, certain potentially sensitive operations (e.g. loading external scripts, accessing cookies, sending pixels, etc.) require the use of sandbox APIs:When you use these APIs, associated template permissions will automatically be surfaced and require that you declare how you’re using them (e.g. where external scripts can be loaded from, which cookies can be accessed, where data can be sent, etc.):The behavior of your templates is tightly controlled by these permissions. Other users will be able to see exactly what your custom tags and variables are permitted to do. And, developers can write on-page policies to govern their behavior.Starting today, you’ll see a new Templates section in the left sidebar of your containers. Whether you’re a marketer wanting to do more in Tag Manager without code or a developer wanting more control over third-party tags on your site, Custom Templates will improve your tagging capabilities.Visit our developer documentationto learn more about Custom Templates, sandboxed Javascript, and permissions.

Your commute just got easier with Google Pay and the Assistant

To make your morning commute easier and less time consuming, we’ve been working with transit agencies in more than 30 cities around the world—from London to Singapore to Moscow—to enable Google Pay and simplify how you ride on public transit. New York City now joins that list of destinations. Starting May 31st, The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will enable the “pay per ride” feature on your phone with a public pilot at select subway stations and Staten Island buses. And we continue to work with The Metropolitan Transportation Authority to bring more features with Google Maps and Google Assistant to make commuting even easier, no matter your destination.Using Google Pay on MTA is part of OMNY, a contactless payment fare system that lets you tap and go with either your contactless payment card, or your mobile phone or wearable. When the public pilot opens next week, you’ll be able to use Google Pay to board all Staten Island buses and subway stations along the 4-5-6 lines between Grand Central and Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center—no need to stand in line for a MetroCard.Using Google Pay to ride with your phone is simple. No need to open the app or unlock your device—and it’s the same price as a single ride MetroCard. Plus, it’s more secure. You don’t have to worry about losing your MetroCard, and Google Pay doesn’t share your actual credit or debit card number when you pay.                                                        And starting today, NYC subway riders can take advantage of the Google Assistant’s new real-time transit feature with the MTA. On your Android phone, all smart speakers, or all Smart Displays just say, “Hey Google, when is the next 4 train arriving?” or “Hey Google, when is the next train?” Your Assistant will share the train’s ETA and provide walking directions to the station, making it easier to plan your commute.You can now ask your Google Assistant for live updates on departure times or the MTA.In the next few weeks, Google Maps will let you see which routes accept Google Pay when you look up directions. And you can see if you’re set up to pay with your phone. If not, you can add a credit or debit card right from the Google Maps app.Google Pay in Google Maps lets users know in advance if they are ready to use their phone to tap and ride.                                              This feature will roll out across destinations around the world in the next few weeks, including Melbourne’s myki transit system, the New York City area’s MTA and London’s TfL. Download the Google Pay Android app to try it on transit today.

A new look for Google Search

Our goal with Search always has been to help people quickly and easily find the information that they’re looking for. Over the years, the amount and format of information available on the web has changed drastically—from the proliferation of images and video, to the availability of 3D objects you can now view in AR.The search results page, too, has changed to help you discover these new types of information and quickly determine what’s most useful for you. As we continue our ongoing efforts to improve Search and provide a modern and helpful experience, today we’re unveiling a visual refresh of the mobile search results page to better guide you through the information available on the web.With this new design, a website’s branding can be front and center, helping you better understand where the information is coming from and what pages have what you’re looking for.  The name of the website and its icon appear at the top of the results card to help anchor each result, so you can more easily scan the page of results and decide what to explore next. Site owners can learn more about how to choose their prefered icon for organic listings here.When you search for a product or service and we have a useful ad to show, you'll see a bolded ad label at the top of the card alongside the web address so you can quickly identify where the information is coming from.As we continue to make new content formats and useful actions available—from buying movie tickets to playing podcasts—this new design allows us to add more action buttons and helpful previews to search results cards, all while giving you a better sense of the web page’s content with clear attribution back to the source.This redesign is coming first to mobile and will be rolling out over the next few days. Stay tuned for even more fresh ways that Search can help you find what you’re looking for.

How the San Francisco 49ers spent a day as Google "interns"

Editor’s note: In April, the San Francisco 49ers visited Google for a day as part of their player engagement and development program. This program gives players life and career skills they can use to set themselves up for success after the NFL. Quarterback Nick Mullens walked us through what he learned as a “Google intern for the day.”For basically my entire life, all I’ve known is football. I grew up loving sports, and I played basketball and football in Hoover, AL. I played football in high school, then at Southern Mississippi, and now for the 49ers. That’s why I was so excited when I received the team text from our player engagement director: “Opportunity to go visit Google, sign up sheets are in the office.” We all signed up right away, to get a glimpse of life outside the next football practice.Our player engagement program gives us all the resources we might need for life outside of football. They take rookies through a series of classes and talk about just the adjustment into the NFL. There are so many new things that you have to learn: dealing with money, dealing with family, dealing with fame, dealing with stress. Recently we realized, hey, we’re in the Bay Area around all these big companies, so why not learn something great—from Google?So after workouts the other day, we got on the bus and headed to Google. We walked in a building and immediately we saw a sign that said, “Welcome San Francisco 49ers” and this cool light-up floor.We had a YouTube presentation that shined a light on how our whole generation is changing and how social media affects fans and people around the world. I mean, shoot, I view myself as a regular dude, but I learned there are people out there who would love to see what I and other professional athletes do on a daily basis.Then after that there was a VR and AR demo. You always hear about virtual reality as the new thing, but I really had no clue what augmented reality was before the presentation and now I can’t wait to see what else comes out of that field—there are so many possibilities.But my favorite part of the day was hearing from Chase Williams, a former football player and Googler. It was really cool to see an athlete make their way into the tech industry and to be successful after football.Google recruiter Chase Williams talks transferable skills.The biggest struggle when leaving the NFL is that you’ve surrounded yourself with this game your entire life, doing the exact same thing over and over. When it’s over, what are you going to enjoy working on? What will you love more than the sport? What else will we be good at? During Chase’s presentation one of my teammates asked the question, “I’ve been playing in the NFL for so long, what skills do I have for the workforce? I’ve just been playing football!”When it’s over, what will you love more than the sport?Chase’s talk helped many of us realize that we’ve been developing ourselves for life after football all along. We know how to perform under pressure and have our work put under a microscope. We know how to communicate—with our teammates, our coaches, our higher-ups, our fans. After playing in the NFL for years, you have a lot of other skills, you just have to realize you have them.When I was a senior in college, I honestly didn’t know how long the NFL would last. I was actually applying for jobs at the same time that I was pursuing the NFL. At that point I wasn’t looking at tech, because I just felt like I didn’t know enough about it to get into it. That’s changed now.I didn’t know just how many things Google could do. It’s not just a search engine—there’s so many different things Google is involved with. It was interesting for me to see just how many people have to contribute just to make the company go. The second I stepped on the Google campus I sensed the open atmosphere and work environment that Google has. Everybody’s just “Googley”—bright, respectful and it looks like they’re enjoying their work. They’re not “going to work,” they’re enjoying what they do.I’m so glad I signed up, because visiting Google was probably the coolest thing we’ve gotten to do—outside of football.

Europe talks: helping Europeans get to know each other better

Starting tomorrow, Europeans will cast their votes to elect their members of the European Parliament. In an increasingly polarized world, Europeans are less likely to understand the points of view of someone from a different city or with opposite political views. But this understanding is essential to a healthy political discourse.The German news website Zeit Online, with technical and financial support from Google, wanted to bridge the gap. Together with 15 other European media outlets like Der Standard (Austria), Efimerida Ton Syntakton (Greece), Financial Times (UK), Gazeta Wyborcza (Poland), La Repubblica (Italy) and Politiken (Denmark), ZEIT ONLINE created “Europe talks,” a platform that brings together thousands of Europeans with diverse views to debate politics. The idea behind “Europe talks” is simple: diverse opinions make conversations more interesting and foster mutual understanding. Each circle on the map corresponds to a city. The size of the dot represents the size of the group who participated in Europe talks.In total, almost 6,000 people held a cross-border debate in person or video conference on May 11. People of all ages traveled far and wide to participate: two debate partners traveled a combined distance of 4,000 kilometers for the debate, and the oldest participant was 91 years old. 500 participants met their debate partner in person at the kick-off event held at the BOZAR Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels. The event included prominent guests like ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti; Philippe Van Parijs, philosopher at the University of Louvain; or Yasmine Ouirhrane, “Young European of the Year 2019.“ ZEIT ONLINE wrapped up ten of the many interesting conversations.Here are two participants at the BOZAR Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels.Europe talks stems from “My Country Talks,” a project initiated by ZEIT ONLINE. Since 2017, we provided funding to build the technology that powered My Country Talks, which matches people to debate, based on a questionnaire and the country they live in. Since then, nearly 80,000 people people with diverse political views have participated. Now when Europeans head to vote in the coming days, hopefully they’ll know their region and their neighbors a bit better than before.

Little kid, big campus: reporting live from Take Your Child to Work Day

It was the start of just another work day for thousands of Googlers at our headquarters in Mountain View. But for the hundreds of fidgeting kids lined up on the sidewalk at the Googleplex, a special day was about to begin. The sun was shining, the Kidz Bop was bopping, the bubbles (not that kind) were flowing. This year’s Take Your Child to Work Day at Google had officially arrived.Well, almost. As the minutes ticked by until the gates opened, I waited with Peri, our 6-year-old reporter (daughter of a Googler and aspiring YouTuber) who led the coverage of this year’s event. As she quietly looked down at her sneakers, perhaps she was asking herself—as many of us do on a Tuesday morning—what the day would bring.Turns out the secret recipe to managing first-grade talent is part one-on-none soccer, part floss (the dance move, not dental … come on, Mom!), and part completely unscripted and unfettered access to a microphone. Hold the organic snacks. Who knew?Minutes later we were off to the races. Building Legos, sticking our hands in water tanks, petting a four-foot alligator (wait, what?), diving in colorful ball pits (this *is* Google, after all) and of course learning just a little bit more about what Mom or Dad really does at work all day long. Guess those few hours away from school weren’t so bad after all.

Finding my authentic self, from the outside looking in

As a child growing up in West Virginia, I have a distinct memory of looking at all of our silverware. Our forks, knives and spoons had the letter “S” engraved on them. I asked my mother why, and she said, “Oh, that’s because that’s our last name.” (My maiden name was Sui.) It was only later in life, after I went to college, that I realized where the S really came from.My parents immigrated from China via Taiwan during the Cultural Revolution. They both came from very modest backgrounds and my father came to the U.S. with $5 in his pocket. He was a dishwasher at the Sheraton at night while he was doing his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania. And the Sheraton gifted them the silverware as a wedding gift.My mom and dad worked incredibly hard to support us as a family. And as one of two Asian families in my town, assimilation was important to them. They wanted us to fit in, not stand out. They wanted us to only speak English, and now I speak Chinese very poorly. But my parents' emphasis on assimilation didn't stop me from facing adversity because of who I am. I had to fight to get the recognition I deserved, and that fight served me well through the rest of my career.The plus side of being in a small town is everyone knows you. But the downside is that people are deeply critical about anyone who is different. I was on the student council, and would walk into another homeroom to make an announcement and have a whole bunch of kids make racist comments. Sadly, the teacher would do absolutely nothing. All of us have that moment of being the “other.” Being the “other” meant that I had to work harder to be treated the same as everyone else. I had to work harder to get the same awards because of prejudices that I couldn’t articulate at the time.It scars you. I repressed much of it and was very angry about it which drove me to think, “I'm going to show you all.” The best thing I did was deciding to go to Stanford. It was a gift to go to a place where I could meet people from all walks of life, and all types and sizes and religions and colors. You start to rethink who you are. All of us have that moment of being the 'other.' Carol CarpenterI think it’s critical to learn from the past and to determine what is authentic to you. And now that it’s Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, I’ve had a chance to reflect on how my past, how that's affected my path, and the lessons I've learned along the way. If you've been a high achiever, you've been around other high achievers and you have beliefs about who you should be or what you should be doing. I’ve had team members come into my office and say, “By the time I’m 30, I want to be a CEO.” These are extrinsic beliefs, not intrinsic beliefs. You need to know for yourself: Where are your lines? Which lines are you not going to cross? What really matters to you? What are you going to go to bat for and fight for, even if your job is on the line?” That's when you can be the best you can be. That's when you'll do your best work. I’m grateful to be at Google, which is an extraordinary company when it comes to accepting all the “others” and working actively to promote respect and inclusion. As a leader, I have a desire to mentor and help others find their sweet spot and thrive, and it’s important to me that no one feels like the “other” on our team. No doubt, we have work to do in our workplace and community, but I see green shoots of progress every day. I’m so excited to see the green shoots blossom!

Research details Android growth in the enterprise

Mobility is key to building a connected workforce that can tackle today’s complex business challenges. According to recently-published IDC research, mobile platforms need to offer hardware choice, multi-layered security, and comprehensive management capabilities to enable digital transformation.This infographic from IDC illustrates how Android meets these attributes, and demonstrates why Android has strong and growing adoption in the enterprise.Security incidents are less frequent in Android-majority enterprises compared to iOS-majority deployments. IDC Infographic "Android Taking Off in the Enterprise"Among the key IDC findings:74 percent of U.S.-based IT decision makers believe Android Enterprise Recommended devices are more secure and enterprise-grade than iOS devices. A recently released Gartner reportdetails Android security performance.77 percent of U.S.-based multinational firms prefer Android devices.Android-majority deployments have a higher satisfaction rate than a mixed or iOS-only fleet.Android-majority enterprises experience eight percent fewer mobile phishing incidents, and five percent fewer issues integrating mobile devices with back end systems.For more insights, explore the IDC findings to discover how Android powers mobile, connected teams and can help your company transition to a digital workforce.

Bose speakers get smarter with the Google Assistant

With help from the Google Assistant, you can customize your entertainment at home with just your voice: ask the Assistant to play your favorite part of a song, pause a favorite show on your Chromecast-enabled TV to grab some snacks or dim the lights before the movie starts. And when you have great hardware that integrates with the Assistant, there's even more you can do.Starting today, Bose is bringing the Google Assistant to its line of smart speakers and soundbars. This includes the Bose Home Speaker 500, Bose Soundbar 500 and 700, and an all-new, compact smart speaker coming later this summer, the Bose Home Speaker 300.With the Google Assistant built in, you can play music, find answers on Google Search, manage everyday tasks and control smart devices around your home—just by saying “Hey Google.” If you’re using the Assistant for the first time on your Bose device, here are a few tips to get started: Enjoy entertainment:Ask the Google Assistant to play music and radio from your speaker. Or, stream videos to your Chromecast-enabled TV with a simple voice command to your Bose smart speaker. Later this summer, you’ll be able to play the news and podcasts, too. Get answers: Get answers on sports, weather, finance, calculations and translations.Control compatible smart home devices:Check that the lights are turned off when you leave home and adjust the thermostat when you return. The Assistant works with over 3,500 home automation brands and more than 30,000 devices.Plan your day:With your permission, get help with things like your flight information, or your commute to work. Check on the latest weather and traffic in your area.Manage tasks:With your permission, your Assistant can add items to your shopping list and stock up on essentials. Set alarms and timers hands free.How to pick the Assistant on your Bose speaker or soundbar If you already own one of these Bose smart speakers or sound bars, it’s easy to get the Assistant set up. Your speaker and soundbar will automatically receive a software update introducing the Google Assistant as a voice assistant option. You can go to “Voice Settings” for the device in the Bose Music app, select the Google Assistant and follow the guided setup process.And if you are purchasing a Bose smart speaker for the first time, you’ll be able to select the Assistant right at set up.With our collaboration with Bose, we hope you enjoy your new home audio with the helpfulness of the Google Assistant.

Behind Magenta, the tech that rocked I/O

On the second day of I/O 2019, two bands took the stage—with a little help from machine learning. Both YACHT and The Flaming Lips worked with Google engineers who say that machine learning could change the way artists create music.“Any time there has been a new technological development, it has made its way into music and art,” says Adam Roberts, a software engineer on the Magenta team. “The history of the piano, essentially, went from acoustic to electric to the synthesizer, and now there are ways to play it directly from your computer. That just happens naturally. If it’s a new technology, people figure out how to use it in music.”Magenta, which started nearly three years ago, is an open-source research project powered by TensorFlow that explores the role of machine learning as a tool in the creative process. Machine learning is a process of teaching computers to recognize patterns, with a goal of letting them learn by example rather than constantly receiving input from a programmer. So with music, for example, you can input two types of melodies, then use machine learning to combine them in a novel way.Jesse Engel, Claire Evans, Wayne Coyne and Adam Roberts speak at I/O.  But the Magenta team isn’t just teaching computers to make music—instead, they’re working hand-in-hand with musicians to help take their art in new directions. YACHT was one of Magenta’s earliest collaborators; the trio came to Google to learn more about how to use artificial intelligence and machine learning in their upcoming album.The band first took all 82 songs from their back catalog and isolated each part, from bass lines to vocal melodies to drum rhythms; they then took those isolated parts and broke them up into four-bar loops. Then, they put those loops into the machine learning model, which put out new melodies based on their old work. They did a similar process with lyrics, using their old songs plus other material they considered inspiring. The final task was to pick lyrics and melodies that made sense, and pair them together to make a song.Music and Machine Learning Session from Google I/O'19“They used these tools to push themselves out of their comfort zone,” says Jesse Engel, a research scientist on the Magenta team. “They imposed some rules on themselves that they had to use the outputs of the model to some extent, and it helped them make new types of music.”Claire Evans, the singer of YACHT, explained the process during a presentation at I/O. “Using machine learning to make a song with structure, with a beginning, middle and end, is a little bit still out of our reach,” she explained. “But that’s a good thing. The melody was the model’s job, but the arrangement and performance was entirely our job.”The Flaming Lips’ use of Magenta is a lot more recent; the band started working with the Magenta team to prepare for their performance at I/O. The Magenta team showcased all their projects to the band, who were drawn to one in particular: Piano Genie, which was dreamed up by a graduate student, Chris Donahue, who was a summer intern at Google. They decided to use Piano Genie as the basis for a new song to be debuted on the I/O stage.Piano Genie distills 88 notes on a piano to eight buttons, which you can push to your heart’s content to make piano music. In what Jesse calls “an initial moment of inspiration,” someone put a piece of wire inside a piece of fruit, and turned fruit into the buttons for Piano Genie. “Fruit can be used as a capacitive sensor, like the screen on your phone, so you can detect whether or not someone is touching the fruit,” Jesse explains. “They were playing these fruits just by touching these different fruits, and they got excited by how that changed the interaction.”Wayne Coyne, the singer of The Flaming Lips, noted during an I/O panel that a quick turnaround time, plus close collaboration with Google, gave them the inspiration to think outside the box. “For me, the idea that we’re not playing it on a keyboard, we’re not playing it on a guitar, we’re playing it on fruit, takes it into this other realm,” he said.During their performance that night, Steven Drozd from The Flaming Lips, who usually plays a variety of instruments, played a “magical bowl of fruit” for the first time. He tapped each fruit in the bowl, which then played different musical tones, “singing” the fruit’s own name. With help from Magenta, the band broke into a brand-new song, “Strawberry Orange.”The Flaming Lips’ Steven Drozd plays a bowl of fruit.The Flaming Lips also got help from the audience: At one point, they tossed giant, blow-up “fruits” into the crowd, and each fruit was also set up as a sensor, so any audience member who got their hands on one played music, too. The end result was a cacophonous, joyous moment when a crowd truly contributed to the band’s sound.Audience members “play” an inflatable banana.You can learn more about the "Fruit Genie" and how to build your own at g.co/magenta/fruitgenie.Though the Magenta team collaborated on a much deeper level with YACHT, they also found the partnership with The Flaming Lips to be an exciting look toward the future. “The Flaming Lips is a proof of principle of how far we’ve come with the technologies,” Jesse says. “Through working with them we understood how to make our technologies more accessible to a broader base of musicians. We were able to show them all these things and they could just dive in and play with it.”

Glass Enterprise Edition 2: faster and more helpful

Glass Enterprise Edition has helped workers in a variety of industries—from logistics, to  manufacturing, to field services—do their jobs more efficiently by providing hands-free access to the information and tools they need to complete their work. Workers can use Glass to access checklists, view instructions or send inspection photos or videos, and our enterprise customers have reported faster production times, improved quality, and reduced costs after using Glass.Glass Enterprise Edition 2 helps businesses further improve the efficiency of their employees. As our customers have adopted Glass, we’ve received valuable feedback that directly informed the improvements in Glass Enterprise Edition 2. Glass Enterprise Edition 2 with safety frames by Smith Optics. Glass is a small, lightweight wearable computer with a transparent display for hands-free work.Glass Enterprise Edition 2 is built on the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR1 platform, which features a significantly more powerful multicore CPU (central processing unit) and a new artificial intelligence engine. This enables significant power savings, enhanced performance and support for computer vision and advanced machine learning capabilities. We’ve also partnered with Smith Optics to make Glass-compatible safety frames for different types of demanding work environments, like manufacturing floors and maintenance facilities.Additionally, Glass Enterprise Edition 2 features improved camera performance and quality, which builds on Glass’s existing first person video streaming and collaboration features. We’ve also added USB-C port that supports faster charging, and increased overall battery life to enable customers to use Glass longer between charges.Finally, Glass Enterprise Edition 2 is easier to develop for and deploy. It’s built on Android, making it easier for customers to integrate the services and APIs (application programming interfaces) they already use. And in order to support scaled deployments, Glass Enterprise Edition 2 now supports Android Enterprise Mobile Device Management.Over the past two years atX, Alphabet’s moonshot factory, we’ve collaborated with our partners to provide solutions that improve workplace productivity for a growing number of customers—including AGCO, Deutsche Post DHL Group, Sutter Health, and H.B. Fuller. We’ve been inspired by the ways businesses like these have been using Glass Enterprise Edition. X, which is designed to be a protected space for long-term thinking and experimentation, has been a great environment in which to learn and refine the Glass product. Now, in order to meet the demands of the growing market for wearables in the workplace and to better scale our enterprise efforts, the Glass team has moved from X to Google.We’re committed to providing enterprises with the helpful tools they need to work better, smarter and faster. Enterprise businesses interested in using Glass Enterprise Edition 2 can contact our sales team or our network of Glass Enterprise solution partners starting today. We’re excited to see how our partners and customers will continue to use Glass to shape the future of work.

How car-loving Googlers turned a “lemon” into lemonade

This April, Googlers Peter McDade and Clay McCauley spent an entire day trying to keep a $300 car running. No, they weren’t stuck on a nightmare of a road trip. They were competing in the 24 Hours of Lemons race, the culmination of eight months of blood, sweat and tears—and a whole lot of grease.Peter and Clay work at a Google data center in Moncks Corner, S.C., located about 20 miles from Charleston. Like many Googlers, the two find joy in taking things apart and putting them back together to see how they work. The data center has a maker space for employees, where colleagues tinker with brewing, electronics and 3D printers, as well as an auto repair station, with a car lift and tools to let people work on their vehicles. But their “lemons” race was way more than an after-work hangout.Here’s how a lemons race works: Participants must team up in groups, and each group must spend no more than $500 on a car. Then they fix it up, give it a wacky paint job and race them. This particular race, nicknamed Southern Discomfort, is a full-day race at the Carolina Motorsports Park; it’s one of the 24 Hours of Lemons races that take place across the U.S. throughout the year. Peter, Clay and two other friends each took one-hour shifts driving, while the rest of the group stayed on call as a pit crew, taking action in case anything broke. Which, given the price of the car, was pretty likely. “The point is not to win,” Peter says. “The point is to finish and have fun.”Peter first came up with the idea of participating in the race, and spread the word at work. Clay was immediately interested and signed up to help, but didn’t think it would work out. “I was thinking, Oh, it probably isn’t that serious, it probably will never happen,'” Clay says. But they stuck with it once other friends outside of Google stepped up to join.Their “lemon” car, which they purchased for $300.Their first challenge? Find a car for under $500. It took them months, but Clay ended up finding a listing for a $300 car, which had been sitting in a field for a long time. “It was actually sinking into the ground, it had been there for so long,” Clay says. “It had grass overgrown around it, and it had mold growing on the paint.” Though the car barely rolled, thanks to a badly bent wheel, they decided they could figure something out.That was the beginning of five months of work. They stripped the car down, fixed elements like the brakes and the wheels and added required safety features like a roll cage. At first, they tinkered with the car on site at the data center, but soon moved it to Peter’s driveway, where it remained until the race. They spent Tuesday and Thursday evenings, plus weekends, working to get it in shape, and kept track of what they had to do with Google Sheets.Peter worked on the car in his driveway.On the big day, other teams didn’t even expect them to finish because of issues with the car’s fuel system and what Peter calls “electronic gremlins.” But they did, and they bested even their own expectations. The team, nicknamed “The Slow and Spontaneous” as a nod to the “Fast and the Furious” movies, made it the full 24 hours, doing 309 laps and finishing in 49th place out of 84 participants.20190427_104927_HDR_new.jpgClay at the wheel.FB_IMG_1556544135650_new.jpgThe car gets refueled mid-race.20190426_121708_HDR_new.jpgThe car at tech inspection.The "Slow and Spontaneous" crew signed the car.The "Slow and Spontaneous" crew signed the car.Emerging victorious wasn’t really the point, though. It was to work on a project with friends, and learn new skills to boot. “We’re not satisfied with something being broken and having to throw it away and buying something new,” Peter says. “It’s better to get something you know you might be able to fix, trying to find it, and realizing that yeah, I could fail, but if I fail, I’m going to learn something.” And they’ll apply those lessons to their next lemons race, taking place this fall.

A promising step forward for predicting lung cancer

Over the past three years, teams at Google have been applying AI to problems in healthcare—from diagnosing eye disease to predicting patient outcomes in medical records. Today we’re sharing new research showing how AI can predict lung cancer in ways that could boost the chances of survival for many people at risk around the world.Lung cancer results in over 1.7 million deaths per year, making it the deadliest of all cancers worldwide—more than breast, prostate, and colorectal cancers combined—and it’s the sixth most common cause of death globally, according to the World Health Organization. While lung cancer has one of the worst survival rates among all cancers, interventions are much more successful when the cancer is caught early. Unfortunately, the statistics are sobering because the overwhelming majority of cancers are not caught until later stages.Over the last three decades, doctors have explored ways to screen people at high-risk for lung cancer. Though lower dose CT screening has been proven to reduce mortality, there are still challenges that lead to unclear diagnosis, subsequent unnecessary procedures, financial costs, and more.Our latest researchIn late 2017, we began exploring how we could address some of these challenges using AI. Using advances in 3D volumetric modeling alongside datasets from our partners (including Northwestern University), we’ve made progress in modeling lung cancer prediction as well as laying the groundwork for future clinical testing. Today we’re publishing our promising findings in “Nature Medicine.”Radiologists typically look through hundreds of 2D images within a single CT scan and cancer can be miniscule and hard to spot. We created a model that can not only generate the overall lung cancer malignancy prediction (viewed in 3D volume) but also identify subtle malignant tissue in the lungs (lung nodules). The model can also factor in information from previous scans, useful in predicting lung cancer risk because the growth rate of suspicious lung nodules can be indicative of malignancy.This is a high level modeling framework. For each patient, the AI uses the current CT scan and, if available, a previous CT scan as input. The model outputs an overall malignancy prediction.In our research, we leveraged 45,856 de-identified chest CT screening cases (some in which cancer was found) from NIH’s research dataset from the National Lung Screening Trial study and Northwestern University. We validated the results with a second dataset and also compared our results against 6 U.S. board-certified radiologists.When using a single CT scan for diagnosis, our model performed on par or better than the six radiologists. We detected five percent more cancer cases while reducing false-positive exams by more than 11 percent compared to unassisted radiologists in our study. Our approach achieved an AUC of 94.4 percent (AUC is a common common metric used in machine learning and provides an aggregate measure for classification performance).For an asymptomatic patient with no history of cancer, the AI system reviewed and detected potential lung cancer that had been previously called normal.Next stepsDespite the value of lung cancer screenings, only 2-4 percent of eligible patients in the U.S. are screened today. This work demonstrates the potential for AI to increase both accuracy and consistency, which could help accelerate adoption of lung cancer screening worldwide.These initial results are encouraging, but further studies will assess the impact and utility in clinical practice. We’re collaborating with Google Cloud Healthcare and Life Sciences team to serve this model through the Cloud Healthcare API and are in early conversations with partners around the world to continue additional clinical validation research and deployment. If you’re a research institution or hospital system that is interested in collaborating in future research, please fill out this form.

Tech Exchange students reflect on their future careers

What if this was your day? At 10 a.m., explore the impact of cybersecurity on society. Over lunch, chat with a famous YouTuber. Wrap up the day with a tour of the Google X offices. Then, head home to work on a machine intelligence group project.Sound out of the ordinary? For the 65 students participating in Google’s Tech Exchange program, this has been their reality over the last nine months.Tech Exchange, a student exchange program between Google and 10 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs), hosts students at Google’s Mountain View campus and engages them in a variety of applied computer science courses. The curriculum includes machine learning, product management, computational theory and database systems, all co-taught by HBCU/HSI faculty and Google engineers.Tech Exchange is one way Google makes long-term investments in education in order to increase pathways to tech for underrepresented groups. We caught up with four students to learn about their experiences, hear about their summer plans and understand what they’ll bring back to their home university campuses.Taylor RoperHoward UniversitySummer Plans:BOLD Internship with the Research and Machine Intelligence team at GoogleWhat I loved most:“If I could take any of my Tech Exchange classes back to Howard, it would be Product Management. This was such an amazing class and a great introduction into what it takes to be a product manager. The main instructors were Googlers who are currently product managers. Throughout the semester, we learned how design, engineering and all other fields interpret the role of a product manager. Being able to ask experts questions was very insightful and helpful.”Vensan CabardoNew Mexico State UniversitySummer Plans:Google’s Engineering Practicum ProgramFinding confidence and comrades:“As much as I love my friends back home, none of them are computer science majors, and any discussion on my part about computer science would fall on deaf ears. That changed when I came to Tech Exchange. I found people who love computing and talking about computing as much as I do. As you do these things and as you travel through life, there may be a voice in your head telling you that you made it this far on sheer luck alone, that you don’t belong here, or that your accomplishments aren’t that great. That’s the imposter syndrome talking. That voice is wrong. Internalize your success, internalize your achievements, and recognize that they are the result of your hard work, not just good luck.”Pedro Luis Rivera GómezUniversity of Puerto Rico at MayagüezSummer Plans:Software Engineering Internship at GoogleThe value of a network:“A lesson that I learned during the Tech Exchange program that has helped a lot is to establish a network and promote peer-collaboration. We all have our strengths and weaknesses, and when we are working on a project and do not have much experience, you can get stuck on a particular task. Having a network increases the productivity of the whole group. When one member gets stuck, they can ask a peer for advice.”Garrett TolbertFlorida A&M UniversitySummer Plans:Applying to be a GEM FellowAsk all the questions: “One thing I will never forget from Tech Exchange is that asking questions goes beyond the classroom. Everyone in this program has been so accessible and helpful with accommodating me for things I never thought were possible. Being in this program has showed me that if you don’t know, just ask! Research the different paths you can take within tech, and see which paths interest you. Then, find people who are in those fields and connect with them.”

Google.org and FII collaborate to empower low-income families

Since 2015, the Family Independence Initiative (FII) has used over $2.5 million in Google.org grants to empower families to escape poverty. Their technology platform UpTogether helps low-income families access small cash investments, connect with each other and share solutions—like how to find childcare or strategies to pay off debt. With the grants last year, FII improved their technology platform and expanded their sites to more cities including Austin and Chicago.This year, the Family Independence Initiative is embarking on a mission of collaborative research to shift what’s possible for low-income families. And today, we’re expanding our investment in FII with a $1 million grant to support a pilot project called Trust and Invest Collaborative, which aims to guide policy decisions that will increase economic mobility for low-income families and their children. The grant will help FII, the City of Boston and the Department of Transitional Assistance examine learnings and successes from FII, and replicate them in future government services offered to low-income families.In addition to our original grants to FII, we offered Google’s technical expertise. Over the last six months, six Google.org Fellows have been working full-time with FII to use their engineering and user experience expertise to help improve UpTogether. They used machine learning and natural language processing to make UpTogether’s data more useful in determining what leads to family success and to make it easier for families to share their own solutions with each other. These improvements in data quality will support the research for the pilot in Boston and Cambridge and help FII continue to share learnings from families’ own voices with future collaborators.

Collaborating to protect nearly anonymous animals

When you have a lot of people working in a Google Doc it can look like a zoo, with anonymous animals popping into your document to write (or howl, bark or moo) their feedback. Today, 13 new animals—like the african wild dog, grey reef shark and cheetah—are joining the pack. Though they may be excellent collaborators, they also need our help.It’s Endangered Species Day, and we’re teaming up with World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Netflix's “Our Planet” to raise awareness around animals that are at risk.According to WWF, wildlife populations have dwindled by 60 percent in less than five decades. And with nearly 50 species threatened with extinction today, technology has a role to play in preventing endangerment.With artificial intelligence (AI), advanced analytics and apps that speed up collaboration, Google is helping companies like WWF in their work to save our precious planets’ species. Here are some of the ways.Curating wildlife data quickly. A big part of increasing conservation efforts is having access to reliable data about the animals that are threatened. To help, WWF and Google have joined a number of other partners to create the Wildlife Insights platform, a way for people to share wildlife camera trap images. Using AI, the species are automatically identified, so that conservationists can act quicker to help recover global wildlife populations.Predicting wildlife trade trends. Using Google search queries and known web page content, Google can help organizations like WWF predict wildlife trade trends similar to how we can help see flu outbreaks coming. This way, we can help prevent a wildlife trafficking crisis quicker.Collaborating globally with people who can help. Using G Suite, which includes productivity and collaboration apps like Docs and Slides, Google Cloud, WWF and Netflix partnered together to draft materials and share information quickly to help raise awareness for Endangered Species Day (not to mention, cut back on paper).What you can do to helpConservation can seem like a big, hairy problem that’s best left to the experts to solve. But there are small changes we can make right now in our everyday lives. When we all collaborate together to make these changes, they can make a big difference.Check out this Slides presentation to find out more about how together, we can help our friends. You can also take direct action to help protect our planet on the “Our Planet” website.