Bodie is an award winning writer and director of short films and other projects that have aired on MTVu, Logo, and the Sundance Channel, and has collaborated with DJ ShyBoy to create music videos for his debut album Water on Mars. Currently Bodie’s video work can be seen as part of the Los Angeles Public Library’s exhibit, “To Live and Dine in L.A.” exploring food culture and issues of food justice in and around L.A. 

We want to know how you use Google Docs, too, so share your own examples at +GoogleDocs or @googledocs with the hashtag #mygoogledocs. -Ed. 

1. Hey Bodie! Tell us a little about yourself and what you do. 
I see myself as a jack-of-all-trades film/media maker/storyteller/… . Although my background is firmly rooted in traditional forms of storytelling--like theatre and film--I’m fortunate that over the past few years I’ve had the opportunity to expand my knowledge of all things new-media related. 

Currently I’m an assistant professor of cinematic practice at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts’ division of Media Arts + Practice. I teach documentary film production, web design, installation-based storytelling, and everything in between. The incredible group of faculty, staff, and students in our department are exploring all types of media (interactive, immersive, web-based, etc.) and how it can be used to critically engage with the issues most pressing to our culture and society. It’s an exciting place to be and, even though I’m a professor, I feel like I learn more than my students every day!

With my newfound awareness of the possibilities inherent to these emergent modes of storytelling, I’m now collaborating with many artists and designers to develop stories that will harness these technologies. This doesn’t mean I’ve completely turned my back on narrative feature films (in fact, I’m in various stages of the writing process for three), but because every project can take such a long time to gestate, I’m a firm believer of casting as wide a net as possible to keep the artistic practice in tip-top shape.

2. How does Google Docs fit into your filmmaking and teaching?
Google Docs is integral to all that I do; I use it to keep track of any ideas I have for future projects, my artistic partners and I use all of the Docs tools for our collaborations, and I use it in my classes as a space in which my students can ideate for group projects.
Re-reading that paragraph I find it amusing because I don’t think I have ever thought of word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations as artistic tools, but the way Google has designed them (and continually improved them) they’ve truly become a key part of my creative process.

3. What are 3 tips you’d give for filmmakers who use/would consider using Google Docs?

  1. Try to think outside of the box - I’ve adapted Sheets to a 3x5” index card technique I learned at UCLA as a way to map out my screenplays, Slides has become a good pre-visualization tool for my video shoots, and Docs can be adapted to use for almost any idea! 
  2. Sync to your devices - I use the entire suite on my phone, laptop, and desktop at school. The mobility it allows is incredible and saves me from having to make multiple copies of documents for each device. 
  3. Collaborate - the fullest potential of Google Docs is only revealed once you use it to work with others.

Forget fumbling with sticky notes or trying to recall that last item on your to-do list. When you’re trying to capture a moment or remember a task, Google Keep can help. And starting today, the things you love about Keep on the web and Android are now available on iOS:

  • Find what you need, quickly by searching and filtering your notes by color and type like images, audio and text. You can also add labels to help you organize your thoughts. 
  • Set time or location-based reminders so you won’t forget to swing by the dry cleaners or miss an item on your shopping list. 
  • Do more, together by sharing your notes so you can divvy up the packing list and watch as the items get checked off in real time. 
Give the new Keep app for iOS a try (it's rolling out today) and capture what’s on your mind!

Posted by Genevieve Cuevas, Software Engineer

School’s in! As you settle into your classes and start to juggle soccer practice, club meetings and homework, we’re here to help. We’ve been spending the summer “break” creating new tools to help you save time, collaborate with classmates and create your best work—all for free.

Schoolwork, minus the work 
Writing papers is now a lot easier with the Research tool in Docs for Android. You can search Google without leaving Docs, and once you find the quotes, facts or images you’re looking for, you can add them to your document with just a couple taps. That means less time switching between apps, and more time perfecting your thesis statement.
With Voice typing, you can record ideas or even compose an entire essay without touching your keyboard. To get started, activate Voice typing in the Tools menu when you're using Docs in Chrome. Then, when you’re on the go, just tap the microphone button on your phone’s keyboard and speak your mind. Voice typing is available in more than 40 languages, so we can help with your French homework, too. VoilĂ !
Do more, together
We’ve made it easier for you to tell what was added or deleted in Docs—and who made the changes. Now when you’ve left a document and you come back to it later, you can just click “See new changes” to pick up right where your classmates left off.
Forms helps you get a lot of information easily and in one place—so when you want to vote on your class field trip or collect T-shirt sizes for your team, you don’t have to sort through dozens of emails. With the new Forms, you can survey with style—choose one of the colorful new themes or customize your form with your own photo or logo, and we’ll choose the right color palette to match. Easily insert images, GIFs or videos and pick from a selection of question formats. Then send out your survey and watch as the responses roll in!
Your best work, your best you 
Creating presentations, crafting newsletters and managing your team’s budget is hard enough without having to worry about making everything look good. With the new collection of templates in Docs, Sheets and Slides, you can focus on your content while we make sure it gets the expert polish it deserves. Choose from a wide variety of reports, portfolios, resumes and other pre-made templates designed to make your work that much better, and your life that much easier.
With Explore in Sheets, you can now spend less time trying to decipher your data, and more time making a point. Explore creates charts and insights automatically, so you can visualize trends and understand your data in seconds on the web or on your Android. It’s like having an expert analyst right by your side.

Mission control, for teachers and students
A year ago, we launched Classroom to save teachers and students time and make it easier to keep classwork organized. Today we’re launching a Share to Classroom Chrome extension to make it easy for teachers to share a website with the entire class at the same time—no matter what kind of laptop students have. Now the whole class can head to a web page together, without losing precious minutes and focus to typos.
Rock this school year with Google Docs and Classroom. Your first assignment? Try these new features, which are rolling out today.

Posted by Ritcha Ranjan, Product Manager

Meet Ben Hundley--a fraternity president who keeps his chapter moving with a little help from Google Docs. 

We want to know how you use Google Docs, too, so share your own examples at +GoogleDocs or @googledocs with the hashtag #mygoogledocs. -Ed.

Hi Ben! Tell us a little about yourself and Delta Upsilon WSU. 
 My name is Ben Hundley and I am the current President of Delta Upsilon WSU. We are a small chapter between the size of 30-40 guys currently and we are based off of the four founding principles of: Promotion of Friendship, Development of Character, Diffusion of Liberal Culture and the Advancement of Justice. Our organization recently celebrated 120 years on our campus and we are extremely proud of the continued tradition and benefit our members offer to the community.
How does Google Docs fit into your chapter’s day to day? 
We as a chapter use Google Docs primarily with our executive board and recruitment team. The executive board has 8 sitting members and the recruitment team has 5 sitting members. For the executive board, we are able to keep documents saved via a house Google account. This allows us to ease the transition each year during officer elections.

This summer we have been using Google Docs heavily in order to allow the executive board to give input on the restructuring of our organization's bylaws. It has made it significantly easier for us to discuss changes and execute those changes in a timely manner because we can have multiple people addressing the same issues or action points without having to be in the same city or state. Our recruitment team is able to coordinate our recruiting efforts through Google Sheets. The lifeblood of any collegiate organization is recruiting new members and therefore, having an easily accessible spreadsheet to track who is calling who and which people have already been contacted is vital.

What are 3 tips you’d give to other fraternities & sororities who use/would consider using Google Docs? If our chapter had to give 3 tips to other greek life, they would be:
  1. Host a training session!! Although Google Docs are easy to navigate, it is still essential to ensure everyone is on the same page. 
  2. Don't forget to learn the ins and outs of privacy and sharing documents 
  3. EXPERIMENT! Try out features and see if they can be adapted to your chapter's needs.

(Cross-posted from the Official Google Blog)

The tradition of ringing in each New Year with resolutions (whether we stick to them or not) is always an opportunity to reflect and start the year ahead on the right foot. As students and teachers around the world return to campuses and classrooms this fall, we’re embarking on a different kind of fresh start: a New (School) Year. And we want to help you make the most of it. So we’ve put together a few resolution ideas, plus tips to help you stick to them. We’ve also made a resolution of our own: to bring the best of Google technology to education.
The best of Google, for education
Like many resolutions, ours might sound familiar—and that’s because the Google for Education team has been working on it for a while. Over the last few years, we’ve spent a lot of time with teachers and students, witnessing firsthand how technology is helping in the classroom and learning about challenges that are yet unsolved. With feedback from schools, we’ve improved products like Google Apps for Education and Docs, building in new features specifically useful for education. We’ve also created new learning experiences like Google Classroom—a sort of mission control for teachers and students, offering a single place to keep track of all class materials, eliminating paperwork and making it easy for teachers to collaborate with students, and students to collaborate with each other.

So as part of our resolution this school year, we’re launching some new features in Google Classroom. Teachers can now easily ask students questions in Classroom, alongside all the other class materials in the stream. Teachers also told us that they want more ways for students to engage with each other, and flex their critical thinking muscles. So now students can comment on each other’s answers in Classroom and have open-ended discussions. In the next month, we'll also make it possible for teachers to add assignments, due dates and field trips to a shared calendar.

So what’s your resolution?
We’re sure you’ve already set some big goals for the year ahead—from acing AP Bio to landing that killer internship. Whatever your plans, it can be tough to stick with those goals once assignments and social commitments start to pile up. So we’ve collected 50+ tips from more than 15 Google products to help you follow through with your resolutions. Here are some ideas:
Resolution 1. Get (and stay) organized
When you’re bogged down by clutter, it can be tough to get stuff done. Make this your year to be more organized. Never miss another study group with help from Google Calendar. Use Google Sheets to keep all your classmates' info in one place, and better manage your inbox by emailing everyone at once with a Google group.

Resolution 2. Get (mentally) fit
Push yourself to take your studies to the next level. Teach yourself how to code with Made with Code. Make the most of language class by saving your most used words and phrases with Google Translate or magically translating webpages with Google Chrome.

Resolution 3. Get some worldly perspective
Not studying abroad this year? No problem. You can still unleash your inner explorer with Google Maps Treks and visit the Pyramids of Giza or the Great Barrier Reef without leaving your room. Or bring your art history class to life by seeing those masterpieces up close and in perfect detail with Cultural Institute.

We hope these give you new ideas for how you can make this school year your best yet. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be announcing more tips and other updates—so follow along with #GoogleEdu and on Google+. We’ll be doing our homework to stick to our resolution, so we can hopefully give you what you need to do the same. Now go hit those books! 

Posted by Miriam Schneider, Google for Education

Meet Kaitlin Kominsky--a publicist from New York who considers Google Docs to be her best kept secret to keeping on top of her busy personal and professional schedules. 

We want to know how you use Google Docs, too, so share your own examples at +GoogleDocs or @googledocs with the hashtag #mygoogledocs. -Ed. 

Hi Kaitlin. Tell us a little about yourself.
Hi! My name is Kaitlin and I live in Brooklyn, New York. I’m a publicist at an agency called M18 PR that specializes in global media relations and brand strategy for clients in the intersecting fields of hospitality, real estate and design. I work with a roster of restaurants, bars and hotels - and it’s my job to make sure their stories are told.

How did you first get introduced to Google Docs?
When I moved to New York, my first job was interning at a hotel in Tribeca and helping with event production after my college classes. Every night, the hotel would host a few different parties on property, including film premieres, live concerts, tech conferences and art openings. Each event had a different guest list, and I was tasked with editing them throughout the day as RSVP confirmations came in. Google Docs made it easy for me to keep each list up to date, which seems like a small task, but is actually very important (Have you ever been denied entry because “you’re not on the list”?) It also allowed me to pull up my class notes while working late, between checking in guests at the door on my tablet. Thanks Google, for helping me graduate.

I hear that you’ve been using Google Docs for a long time, in a lot of different ways. Tell us more about this.
It’s important for me both personally and professionally to stay organized. Working in a field that requires a lot of travel and socializing beyond the desk, I’m often bouncing between the properties I work with, meetings with press, and late night events. Google Docs not only make it easy for me to access important documents and schedules on the go, but also to create a common space to connect with my colleagues when we are in different cities. Because I work in real time with the news cycle, my presentations and meeting materials are constantly in flux. I often find myself updating case studies and press reports in my cab with the Google Docs app, minutes before meeting with a client (but shh, that’s a secret).
Beyond the office, I like to create a checklist each week of things to do, articles to read, and people to see. Though I like the idea of keeping a beautiful, leather-bound planner, it’s just not feasible for my lifestyle. My checklist, which I create in Sheets (“Sheetz To Do”) is an informal and non-fussy way for me to ensure I’m managing my time. Depending on my mood, I may throw a horoscope or ironic .gif in there too. If “Do Your Laundry” has been carried over for more than a week, I know I’m in trouble.

I also have a running summer calendar with my roommate of things to do around the city. We update it as we hear of outdoor shows & movies, new restaurants, art openings, and readings. I’m more artistic while she’s more literary, and because we can both update it, it often inspires me to check out a part of her world that I wouldn’t normally be inclined to. It also helps eliminate the “What are we going to do tonight?” problem. Well, sometimes at least... I’m a Libra.

What are 3 tips you’d give for other people who use/would consider using Google Docs?
  1. Download the app! It’s easy (and free, very important). 
  2. Make use of the “Personal Dictionary” tool, it puts Word’s ‘synonyms’ button to shame. 
  3. Share with your colleagues, friends and family! The best feature about Google Docs is that it provides a platform to contribute and communicate.

<Cross-posted from the Google for Work blog>

Google Slides helps you share your big ideas with the world, but sometimes presenting these ideas can be challenging. In June, Slides added support for Chromecast and Airplay, which made it easier to project your slides on the big screen. Now there’s another new way to share your work: easy presenting to Hangouts video calls.Teammates, partners, clients and classmates can see your ideas, even if they’re on the other side of the planet.
  As you get ready for the big meeting, all you need is your Android phone or tablet. With one tap of the present button, you’ll see the option to present to a Hangouts video call. Meetings that are scheduled on your calendar will automatically be listed, so you can be up and running in no time. 

You’ll also get a handy look at who's on the call before you start presenting. Once you’re ready to rock, you can use your mobile device to advance slides, view speaker notes and stay on track with a built-in timer.

Presenting just got even easier with Google Slides on Android, available starting today and rolling out over the next few days.

Posted by Fenil Shah, Software Engineer, Google Slides