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Will Brockman
Works at Google
Attended University of California San Diego
Lives in Boston area
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Will Brockman

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Proud to be part of the team making this collaboration happen. Making sense of the genome, so that we can improve health, is one of the biggest challenges the world is facing today. 
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So happy for you that this project has been announced now. A perfect fit for you.
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Will Brockman

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Here's a teacher using Nearpod on Android tablets to monitor student learning in the classroom - a simple, low-friction method for assessing what students really understood from the lesson, and responding appropriately.
 
Teaching with Google Play for Education
+Dianne Leoni's class uses Nearpod to share multiple approaches to solving the same problem, helping students better learn the underlying mathematical concepts. #PlayforEDU #GoogleEDU

Interested in how other teachers are using tablets with Google Play for Education in the classroom? Visit our Google Play for Education module (http://goo.gl/TwR2XA) on the Google for Education Learning Center to see apps in action. From handwriting (http://youtu.be/cBgWGXnHDiU ) to physics (http://youtu.be/RqqOb3B8jVM), reading (http://youtu.be/UDmBrpAvTw8) to creating books (http://youtu.be/NAPvWsbpG-U) -- these teachers showcase how using Android apps in class has helped keep students engaged and learning. 
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Will Brockman

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Launched! My team's latest launch is a major expansion of Google Play for Education.
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I'm delighted to be able to share the project that I've been working on: Google Play for Education was announced as part of the Google I/O keynote this year.
 
We’ll soon be launching Google Play for Education, a new destination for students and teachers to access highly engaging educational content and tools. Developers, find out how to get started: goo.gl/T7QYK. Educators, sign up to learn more: goo.gl/YxRDM. #GooglePlay #Education   #IO13  
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Dear Will, thank you for sharing the Google Play for Education program with me. I'm not at present teaching in a formal way, although I relish my degree in education, as I think it was the perfect place for me to learn about teaching and learning. As an example, I was remembering how well I still can recall some of the Bible stories my mother used to read nightly to Donna and me  when we were young (before Ed and Betsy). One factor in remembering some of the Old Testament Bible stories for me (as in the cautionary fairy tales) is that if you can associate strong feelings such as fear with the learning, it willbe remembered much longer. A scary Bible story we loved was Balthazar's  feast. We knew it would end in his death, but the writing on the wall during the feast was frightening every time we picked that story out to be read that night.  This is just one example which occurs throughout children's literature, and I have no idea whether or how you've included reading in your teaching apps. But the idea about feelings and memories came to me as I read about you program, so I thought I'd pass it on.

I hope this program receives the attention it deserves.  Much love, Linda
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Will Brockman

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We've launched NGram Viewer 2.0! Have fun, everyone...
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How can I get a high resolution Ngram graph by using the Ngram Viewer 2.0?
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Will Brockman

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A very nice essay on the distress of the privileged, starting from a great analogy.  The winning strategy, Doug Muder concludes, is to balance justice with compassion: "Ultimately, the privileged need to be won over. Their sense of justice needs to be engaged rather than beaten down. The ones who still want to be good people need to be offered hope that such an outcome is possible in this new world."
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+Lori Kenschaft You might find this interesting.
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Will Brockman

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A sample 4th-grade math performance task from PARCC is surprisingly challenging: similar to some problems I remember from the MOEMS math contest for this age group (moems.org).

The problem, in case the image doesn't come through, is: The perimeter of the rectangular state park shown is 42 miles. (Figure shows a rectangular with one side labeled 8 miles.)  A ranger estimates that there are 9 deer in each square mile of park. If this estimate is correct, how many total deer are in the park? Explain your answer using numbers, symbols, and words. 

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/curriculum/2014/08/a_closer_look_at_a_math_perfor.html?cmp=ENL-EU-NEWS2
A group of Maryland math educators take a close look at a 4th grade performance task, and several are surprised by the level of advanced thinking it requires.
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Will Brockman

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Here's a teacher using Android tablets as scientific instruments in her physics class - a simple fun experiment that produces graphs of centripetal force and acceleration. 
 
Interested in how teachers are using tablets with Google Play for Education in the classroom? +Rebecca Vieyra has students use the Android apps Physics Toolbox Accelerometer and Skitch to learn about centripetal force. #kinestheticlearning  

Visit our Google Play for Education module on the Google for Education Learning Center to see more apps in action. From handwriting to physics, reading to creating books -- these teachers showcase how using Android apps in class has helped keep students engaged and learning. #PlayforEDU #GoogleEDU
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Will Brockman

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Here's the video of the Google I/O keynote with more details about the project I've been working on lately: expanding Google in Education to include Nexus tablets, and in particular opening  Google Play for Education. Starting at 1:24:24 here: Google I/O 2013: Keynote
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Will Brockman

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Felix Salmon is trenchant: building skyscrapers on low-lying ground because your models tell you it's safe is an excellent analogy to betting your bank on complicated derivatives because your models tell you it's safe.
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Will Brockman

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I enjoyed reading Twilight of the Elites by Chris Hayes, editor-at-large of The Nation and host of an MSNBC show. The big weakness of this book is that it doesn't summarize tidily; but there are lots of great sections. Here's one of my favorites, called "Open Secrets".

He's just been arguing that there is a Gresham's law ("bad money drives out good") of results-driven organizations: if cheaters are not dealt with, then all the rewards wind up going to cheaters, so only cheaters will remain.  Two "surefire tip-offs" of this devolution, he says, are the open secret and the inside joke. Here are two traders at Enron:

" 'He just f---s California. He steals money from California to the tune of about a million.'
   'Will you rephrase that?'
   'OK, he, um, he arbitrages the California market to the tune of a million bucks or two a day.' "

And here's Jose Canseco on steroids in baseball:

"...the trainers would jokingly call the steroid injections 'B12 shots,' and soon the players had picked up on that little code name too.... 'I need to go in and get a B12 shot,' a player would say, and everyone would laugh."

Investment bankers during the housing boom:

"Get the deal closed, if there's a problem later on, it was just another case of 'IBGYBG' - 'I'll be gone, you'll be gone.' "

Hayes summarizes: "What ties together these internal communications is the lurking, nagging presence of a conscience. In each case and in dozens others, the perpetrator tips his hand that he knows what he's doing isn't quite on the up-and-up. The inside joke [is] a kind of moral defense, a way for the agents of a fraud to distance themselves from their own culpability." 

So I'm making a mental note-to-self: if you ever see these signs anyplace you work, get out!
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Good suggestion, done, and done.
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Will Brockman

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Delighted to be able to share what my team and I have been working on lately.
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I first read that as an edible dispenser for (photographic) film....
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Education
  • University of California San Diego
  • Harvard University
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William Brockman
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I'm a software engineer at Google, and a former mathematician. I've worked in fields ranging from radar to genomics.
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Software engineer
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  • Google
    Software engineer, present
  • Broad Institute
  • General Dynamics
  • Environmental Research Institute of Michigan
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Boston area
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Connecticut - San Diego, CA - Ann Arbor, MI
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