Monday, May 22, 2017

Google Takeout

Need to move or backup your Google data? You can access and download all of your Google data—whether to import it to another service or just to create your own copy by using Google Takeout.

Google Takeout can back up the following:

Let's get started!

Select the items you would like to backup [Select All or individual Google products]. At the
least, backup Drive.

Then scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the Next button.

Leave the “File type” as .zip, “Delivery method” as Send download link via email and click
Create Archive.

The archiving process may take a while to complete. Once it is finished, you can click download in the Takeout window, or from the email message you received from Google Download Your Data. You can now save the Zipped archive file to a safe location (Flash Drive, External Drive, etc.). 

Take Out Window:


Want more help? Here's a 5-minute video tutorial on using Google Takeout:

Monday, May 8, 2017

Google Drive Sharing

Are you a Google Drive sharing ninja? Or are you still getting the hang of it? Either way, I have some tips to share that should help you manage shared files a bit more efficiently.

You can share anything that you have stored in Google Drive. The secret is all about setting the correct permissions and level of sharing.  This short video will help explain the process.

There are three levels of access you can grant to others:
  • Can edit: The collaborative spreadsheet you are working on with your team.
  • Can comment:  The book draft you are writing. Others can view and add comments to the file, but can’t edit it. Folders don’t have comments.
  • Can view:  The weekend party invitation you just made with Presentation.
Source: Google Support

Monday, May 1, 2017

Organize Google Drive - Part 2

Still working on organizing your Google Drive? Are your files all over the place?
A well-organized file structure can help you find the information you need quickly and efficiently.

I previously posted a slide share outlining how to get started on organizing Drive, and it is as relevant today as it was then. Here is the link to that resource:

New to Google Drive?

District 50 offers SimpleK12 online training videos, and I would suggest the webinar "An Intro to Google Drive and Tools".  Even seasoned Drive users will find a tip or two in this presentation.

Google Drive Cheatsheet

Need more help?

Here is another resource for organizing Google Drive brought to you by the Apps Show at Better Cloud Monitor.

In this video you will learn how to:

  • Stay organized using the different Drive sections, like “Starred” and “Recent”
  • Create a clean folder structure
  • Color-code your folders
  • Create an effective naming convention for your Drive files

Monday, April 24, 2017

Fun With GIFs

What is a GIF file?

A GIF file is one of those neat little clips you see all over the internet. They usually repeat or loop.

How do you say that?

Just like the peanut butter.

Great for documentation and instruction

GIFs are terrific resources for people who create and share a lot of GIdocumentation. Rather than attempting to write out instructions or providing screenshots, they can make documentation more engaging, especially for visual learners. 

Creating a GIF

For the demo above, I used Screencastify for screen capture and then converted the file with Online Video Converter. Both of these tools are free. 


If you are using a paid version of ScreenCastify, you can create a GIF right within the program. If you are using the free version, you will need to convert your video from .webm to .gif. That's where convert-video-online comes in handy.

Convert Video Online

I used my D50 Google login information to connect the video converter to my Google Drive. It made the process of uploading and downloading my video much easier.

Adding a GIF to Gmail, Docs, Slides and more!

There are two easy options. You can use the 'Insert Photos' icon or drag and drop the GIF file from your desktop. You should see the GIF work immediately, 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Three Reasons Why I Love Office 365

I use G-Suite for almost everything I do. Docs, Slides, Sheets are my mainstays.
However, there are two heroes among the Microsoft Office 365 online offerings. OneNote and Sway, and one hero in the iOS and Android apps world, Office Lens. These products work on a variety of devices: iPad, Chromebook, PC, Mac, Android etc. And they are FREE!

To access OneNote and Sway:
Enter your D50 email and password
Access the Office 365 apps via the icon in the upper left corner of your screen.


I use Google Keep for most of my quick notes, but for keeping and organizing everything from meeting notes to user manuals, I use OneNote. I have used this product since the dark ages when cloud storage was just a dream. Check it out. You might find your next best friend - OneNote!

Office Lens

Office Lens is a great OCR app that turns images into editable text.
Available for iOS and Android devices. Go to the Apple Apps Store or Google Play to install to your device.
I use this app for many things, but I really like the Business Card setting. I haven't had a Rolodex in years. I want contact information at my fingertips on the go!


Want to step up your presentation game? Create interactive reports, presentations, personal stories, and more in this great app. Sway is free, dynamic and easy to use.

Thanks to Teachers.Tech for the video tutorials.
To subscribe to Teacher's Tech videos click the link below: 

Monday, April 10, 2017

How to Use Google Keep with Docs

We've already talked about Google Keep. My original post about Google Keep can be found here:

You already know that you can add notes, lists, photos, and audio to Google Keep. Google Keep notes are sync across all your devices, and you can access and share notes from anywhere. But there is something new with Google Keep that makes it even better as a useful tool! Now Google Keep has integrated with Google docs, so, you can create, view, and add your Google Keep notes within Google Docs.

 Insert Google Keep notes in Docs

  • To add Google Keep notes to your Google Docs, locate the tools menu in Docs. Next, select 'Keep Notepad' option to display the list of your Google Keep notes.

  • Google Keep will appear on the right side of the screen. All the notes and lists will be listed from the Google Keep.

  • In the right side panel of the note you want to insert, click the 3-dots menu icon. Click  Add to document.

    • Note: You can select and drag the note to document.

Save to Keep from Docs

  • Select text or image in your document and right-click on it. Click Save to Keep notepad.

  • Selected text or image will be added to Google Keep, and it will appear as a new note in the Google Keep panel.

I hope you enjoy this incredibly handy new feature!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Columns and Change Case in Google Docs

Today we are going to look at two new features in Google Docs.


This feature is really not so new as it was launched in the fall. In case you missed it,
Google Docs now has the ability to format the page into 1, 2 or 3 columns. This is great when it comes to using different styles of writing for various publications, such as newspapers, newsletters, and leaflets, etc.

Using the Columns Feature in Docs:

  • Select the Format option from the menu bar
  • Select the Columns feature
  • You can select a one (the default), two or three column layout
  • There is a "More options" feature which enables more control over spacing and lines between the columns.

Note: To enter the next column you need to use the Column break feature from the Insert menu.

Change Case (Capitalization)

There is a Google add-on that will allow you to change case, but as of March 28th, Google added this feature to Google Docs, so there is no longer any need to use the add-on.

Using the Capitalization feature in Docs and Slides:
  • Select the Format option from the menu bar
  • Select the Capitalization feature
  • You can select from the following:
    • lowercase, to make all the letters in your selection lowercase.
    • UPPERCASE, to capitalize all the letters in your selection.
    • Title Case, to capitalize the first letter of each word in your selection.