Google
 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Silk Offers Great Tools for Creating Data Visualizations

Silk is a free tool that I first tried a couple of years ago when it was primarily a digital portfolio and simple web page creation tool. Since then it has evolved to include some fantastic tools for creating and sharing data visualizations.

To create a visualization on Silk you can upload data in a spreadsheet, manually enter data, or use one of data sets that Silk provides in their gallery. Once you've uploaded data or selected it you can use it to create fourteen different visualizations. To create a different visualization of the same data set simply choose a different visualization style from the Silk menu. See my screenshot below for further explanation.
Click to view full size.

Silk visualizations can be made public or kept private. If you keep your visualizations private you can still share them directly to other Silk members by inviting them to your project. Public visualizations can be embedded into blog posts as I have done below.




H/T to The Next Web for the update on Silk.

Google Safety Center - Good Tips for Parents

Google's Safety Center offers parents good advice on keeping their kids safe online. Much of the information provided in the Safety Center is focused on things like privacy settings, search filters, and Android app management. The information on settings and filters is complemented with advice on talking to kids about responsible online behaviors. That advice comes from organizations including Common Sense Media, iKeep Safe, and OnGuard Online.

Applications for Education
As the school year winds-down consider adding some information about Google's Safety Center to a school blog post, library blog post, or newsletter. Even if parents have seen this information before, it's worth remembering as we head into summer when many students will be home alone with lots of time to be on the web.

Getting Started With Canva - A Quick Guide to Creating Visuals

Last week I shared Canva's thirty design tutorials and lesson plans that incorporate designing infographics, comics, and other visuals. Today, Canva released a new video tutorial that covers just the basics of creating designs and downloading them from Canva. If you're the type of person who prefers to just jump into a tool rather than work through a long series of tutorials, this video is for you.


Applications for Education
Canva has some fantastic teachers developing lesson plans for them. Some of the newer lesson plans on Canva's education page include comic book creation, a lesson on sugar in our diets, and a lesson on illustrating ideas with infographics.