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For Hannah Johnston, growing up in Ottawa there weren’t a lot of opportunities to learn to code at school. But after attending an Actua summer science camp, she knew she had definitely caught the bug – a computer bug, of course! Today she’s an interaction designer at Google, helping design an internet that’s easy for everyone to search and understand.

What if we could inspire 100,000 young Canadians like Hannah to think about how technology can change the world, and then help them learn the skills to make it happen?

Today, in the midst of 3D selfies and motion-controlled video games, we’re excited to announce the launch of Codemakers, a new project led by Actua and supported with a $1.5 million grant from Google.org. Over the next 3 years, Codemakers will set out to deliver 1 million face-to-face hours of computer science and technology learning in Canada to spark the next generation of creative, young code makers and inventors.


Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google, works with kids creating their own video games at today’s launch of the Codemakers partnership between Google Canada and Actua.

Working together, we’re going to pair up the creative minds of Canadian Google engineers with Actua’s top computer science thinkers to design a hands-on computer science experience for kids. Using maker spaces and hacking approaches, Codemakers will explore the building blocks of computer hardware, the fundamentals of data and coding, and how to put these fundamentals straight to work doing things like designing apps from scratch.

With more than 20 years experience breaking down barriers to help youth learn about science and technology, Actua and its network of members will bring Codemakers to life in club programs, summer camps and school workshops in every region of Canada and in particular, to underserved youth populations, including Aboriginal youth, girls, New Canadians, and young people facing significant socioeconomic challenges.

Together, we’re going to help give young Canadians the technical skills, expertise and confidence to grab their future in both hands, follow their passions and start building their biggest and best ideas.

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Billboard and Nielsen have shaped the core measures of success for entertainers around the world. These institutions created the standard we all look to when assessing the popularity of an artist, an album or that song you just can’t stop playing. Each week, their rankings are eagerly awaited by budding musicians, bona fide rock stars and music executives alike.

Of course, the music industry has changed dramatically in recent years. We’ve seen artists become stars through channels that simply didn’t exist a decade or two ago, like Gangnam Style, MonsterCat or Walk off The Earth. YouTube has become a place where artists connect with new audiences, and music fans are discovering songs, bands and genres they never knew they loved.

Now, Billboard Canada has launched the first-ever Canadian Hot 100 chart to include Nielsen’s streaming data, in addition to sales data and radio airplay detections. Streams are now factored into the chart’s rankings, enhancing a formula that includes digital download track sales, physical singles sales, radio airplay and other streaming services, all tracked by Nielsen. With their massive scale, fans on YouTube are now helping to decide who the top 10 artists are.

Music consumption continues to grow and never before has the Canadian Hot 100 chart better represented total music consumption. The addition of streaming data to the Hot 100 formula reflects the current state of the industry. All official videos on YouTube identified as containing a track (including fan-uploaded videos), will now factor into determining the popularity of particular tracks.

Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” would seem to be one of the big winners from the inclusion of streaming, which may be due to the large number of views of the video on YouTube. The song appeared at #18 on last week’s chart, which did not include streaming data, and jumped up to #3 this week with the addition of streaming. It is the second most streamed song behind Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” and is one of three songs that had over one million streams last week (for the week ending Sunday Sept. 14).

Songs in the pop and R&B genres look set to benefit from the change to the Hot 100 chart because of their high streaming rates compared to other genres such as rock and country. Also appearing to benefit are songs that were big hits earlier this year, including Iggy Azalea “Fancy” (#20, up from #30) and Pharrell Williams “Happy” (#25 from #39).

The updated Canadian Hot 100 is now available on Billboard.com and Billboard.biz; and will be featured in the September 27, 2014 Issue of Billboard magazine, which hits newsstands on September 20.

Most importantly, we hope this news will excite our users, who have helped us discover some of the biggest stars and songs of the past seven years.

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Re-Posted from Google Official Blog

From thousands of submissions from 90+ countries, our panel of esteemed judges selected 18 finalists representing nine countries—Australia, Canada, France, India, Russia, U.K., Ukraine and the U.S.—who spent today impressing Googlers and local school students at our Mountain View, Calif. headquarters. In addition to our Grand Prize Winners, the winners of the 2014 Google Science Fair are:
  • 13-14 age category: Mihir Garimella (Pennsylvania, USA) for his project FlyBot: Mimicking Fruit Fly Response Patterns for Threat Evasion. Like many boys his age, Mihir is fascinated with robots. But he took it to the next level and actually built a flying robot, much like the ones used in search and rescue missions, that was inspired by the way fruit flies detect and respond to threats. Mihir is also the winner of the very first Computer Science award, sponsored by Google. 
  • 17-18 age category: Hayley Todesco (Alberta, Canada) for her project Waste to Water: Biodegrading Naphthenic Acids using Novel Sand Bioreactors. Hayley became deeply interested in the environment after watching Al Gore’s documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.” Her project uses a sustainable and efficient method to break down pollutant substances and toxins found in tailing ponds water in her hometown, a hub of the oil sands industry. 
  • The Scientific American Science in Action award: Kenneth Shinozuka (Brooklyn, New York) for his wearable sensors project. Kenneth was inspired by his grandfather and hopes to help others around the world dealing with Alzheimer's. The Scientific American award is given to a project that addresses a health, resource or environmental challenge. 
  • Voter’s Choice award: Arsh Dilbagi (India) for his project Talk, which enables people with speech difficulties to communicate by simply exhaling.


Congratulations Hayley!

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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.