Google Search Updates

Google has updated two of it’s search function in ways that will make it easier for language teachers to find content.

Google Video now allows for a language specific search in the advanced form.  It’s not 100% accurate, but it’s still a great time saver.

Google labs is working on using image recognition for the image search function.  This is particularly useful when you’re searching for a keyword that can have multiple meanings.  “Paris” as in the capital of France or Paris Hilton is one of the examples given.  Now users can select the image that suits their keyword, and similar images will be shown.

Digital Storytelling Article

There’s a great essay on academic commons, Multimedia as Composition: Research, Writing and Creativity.

The part that may be most valuable for professors considering assigning such a project is the short list of recommended techniques:

  1. pitching (where ideas are presented to the professor or class for feedback)
  2. storyboarding (the visual equivalent of outlining)
  3. drafting (early projects that get feedback)
  4. peer evaluation
  5. group work (so students can supplement each others’ skills)
  6. revising (to promote the idea that the project’s quality is more important than the grade)

The essay is practical and concise.  Well worth the time to read.  If you’re just getting started reading blogs and using rss readers such as Bloglines or Google Reader, the Academic Commons is a great blog to get you started.

Europeana Launched

Europeana aims to gather and digitized the collections of some of Europe’s largest libraries, archives, and museums.  Their website is still in beta; however, the collection is already quite extensive.

It’s well worth the time to do some quick searches to see what resources are available. The images are not of the same quality that you would find in our Artstor subscription (, though the collection itself is larger and includes audio and video as well.

Other sources you may be interested in:

  • Flickr (Photo sharing site.  Most images in creative commons.  High quality photos, everyday life)
  • ccMixter (Repository for music, most of which is generously licensed under a Creative Commons. Great for Podcast intro music etc.)
  • Creative Commons Search (Search several popular web resources for creative commons resources)
  • Blip TV (similar to YouTube, but much smaller and higher quality video)