10 Improvements to Google Squared

Google Squared is a wonderful search tool, undiscovered in my opinion, for the primary classroom due to the structure it provides – but also because of the flexibility to work directly in the search environment.

(Read Google Squared: A Complete Guide for more information about how to use it in the classroom.)

Ponte stretto by DanielaNob 
Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License

As it is still in the Labs I think it is important to contribute in a small way to the changes that could take place so based on my classroom experiences, here are mine:

  1. Search for values and add back to the square – would be great for children to decide that the presented values are not accurate enough, go to a regular search and then have a little button beside the source to ADD TO SQUARE.
  2. Change source for images too – when values have other possible sources we can change them. Sometimes the image is not as useful or appropriate as it could be. Would be useful to change the source or select a different image. Would also be great to integrate Creative Commons licensing for the images.
  3. Confidence rate the data used – some of the values presented show a confidence rating, would be useful for us to be able to rate that info too. If it isn’t relevant to the search we have done then we can say.
  4. Colour change for added search – when you “Add to Square” it would be useful to be able to have a visual cue to the separate searches you have added.
  5. Embed – would be great to be able to grab the code to embed the Square in a blog or other site. You can do it from the exported Spreadsheet but would be nice to be able to add it straight from the Square.
  6. Send the Square – would like to be able to grab the link or email directly from the Square.
  7. Suggest a category from a duff search– rather then having to build from scratch after a duff search – it would be good if Squared was able to suggest a category from what you added. Did you mean…
  8. Other media – please add Youtube and audio clips – we have been looking at Whales using Squared and would have been great for the class to see and hear these amazing animals right there in the search results. Maybe you could add Twitter as well – tweets from users about the category. “I just saw a humpback whale on our boat trip…”
  9. Description source – changing the source of the description would be useful to allow greater access to the text. Especially useful when using Simple Wikipedia for example. Perhaps you could also change language as well for the whole Square.
  10. Fix the Image insert for exported spreadsheets – when a Square is exported to a Google Spreadsheet the image appears as the URL. As Spreadsheets supports images it would be great to see these right there in the sheet so what you Square is exactly what you export.

I hope that the engineers at Google find them useful. Please let me know how you think Google Squared might be improved, especially in light of classroom experience.

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