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How Devonport Boys High School is building the next generation of entrepreneurs

Category: Google | Jan 19, 2017

Editor’s note: Leading up to Bett, one of the largest education technology conferences in the world, we’re highlighting teachers, students and administrators who are using educational technology to make learning more interactive and impactful for their students. From our Impact Portraits series, Ben Forte shares how Devonport is creating a more collaborative, entrepreneurial environment for its 1,200 students using technology. Check out @GoogleForEdu and #BETT2017 to learn what we’re talking about at Bett. To hear more from Ben, visit Google’s teaching theater at Bett on Thursday Jan. 26 at 1:30 p.m.

When you walk into a startup or big tech office, it’s not out of the ordinary to see ping pong tables, vending machines for gadgets or open spaces without walls or cubicles. But these environments aren’t standard in the education system. In fact, most schools think that this type of modern, open space would create chaos and limit the ability to learn.

When I joined Devonport Boys High School, I set out to prove the opposite. I believed that by creating open spaces and giving students the technology and tools they need to think like entrepreneurs, they’d learn far more than in a rule-bound, confined environment. To support this idea, we created the Learning Commons: a dedicated space including a big room with an artificial lawn and bean bags, a separate room with whiteboard-ready desks, and small meeting rooms, custom built for collaboration and group discussions.

Learning-Commons-Space.jpg

At the same time, we overhauled our technology. Chromebooks and G Suite for Education were so affordable that each student was allotted a device, letting us distribute technology to more students and teachers than ever before. We replaced outdated systems with Google tools to personalize learning and encourage greater collaboration. The result was a measurable increase in student participation, including a 60 percent increase in students accessing their accounts outside of school.

Devonport 1a.png

Empowering students to be digital ambassadors

Often when schools adopt new learning technology, teachers and administrators take responsibility for introducing the required resources and processes. At Devonport, we asked students to participate in the roll-out, and they embraced the opportunity. They created department- and subject-specific websites using Google Sites, and set up others for clubs and extracurriculars like Biology Society, Chess Club, Astronomy Club and Debate Club. This student-led project helped foster an entrepreneurial mindset and reorganize the departments and clubs. And now students, teachers and administrators can easily access shared event calendars, photos and resources with Google Drive.

Students also use Hangouts and Chromebooks outside of the classroom to hold meetings for student-run clubs and extracurricular activities. During the meetings, they take notes in Google Docs for everyone to view, and to help those who missed the meeting get up to speed. The portability of Chromebooks allows students to collaborate regardless of their physical location.

Devonport 2a.png

Meeting students where they are with personalized resources and parent involvement

With G Suite for Education, teachers can create a customized learning path by sharing videos, articles and additional assignments with each student based on their areas of improvement. By tracking their progress and giving every student one-on-one feedback during and after class, teachers are meeting students where they are, and challenging students to push themselves.

Devonport 3.JPG

Collaborative spaces and tools allow students and teachers to work closely together.

Parents are a big part of students’ education, and we wanted to create a better communication channel between parents and teachers. We created a Parent Portal on Google Sites, which lets teachers share updates and feedback with parents about their child’s learning. This not only creates a positive relationship for the school and parents, but also helps parents identify how they can help their children at home and outside of the classroom.

Teachers are also making learning content more dynamic by incorporating videos and online activities. Our psychology department truly adopted the digital mindset and replaced the textbook with Google Sites, including online videos, links to articles and recorded lesson plans.

We want our students to be inspired to think creatively, to become the next generation of digital entrepreneurs, inventing ways to improve our schools, their lives and the world through technology. With the help of G Suite and Chromebooks, we’re on our way.

Read the full Devonport Impact Portrait and check out g.co/EduImpact for stories of impact from around the world.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/E2rTl-QvLnE/

Showcase your art in new ways with Tilt Brush Toolkit

Category: Google | Jan 19, 2017

Tilt Brush is a tool for creators of all backgrounds and styles to make art in virtual reality. Sketches made in Tilt Brush stand on their own — you can film your sketches, take 2D snapshots, export them as 3D objects. However there hasn’t been an easy way to add animation, interactivity, or sequencing to your art. That is, until now.

Today, we’re introducing the Tilt Brush Toolkit, an open source library for bringing your Tilt Brush art to other creative projects. With the toolkit, the next generation of artists can create narrative, interactive, and immersive content using Tilt Brush sketches.

The Tilt Brush Toolkit includes Python scripts and a Unity SDK with everything you need to make movies, interactive stories, video games, music videos, or other projects using assets created in Tilt Brush. We’re sharing all of our brush shaders, our audio reactive code, a streamlined Unity import pipeline, file format conversion utilities, and several great examples so hobbyists and professionals can showcase their Tilt Brush art in new places, on new platforms, and in new ways.  

Tilt Brush Toolkit: Racing Game

Tilt Brush Toolkit: Dungeon

Tilt Brush Toolkit: Audio Reactive


Share your projects using the #TiltBrush hashtag, and we’ll highlight our favorites from @googlevr.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/JkG10BsvL8w/

A virtual trek through Petra with Google Cardboard

Category: Google | Jan 18, 2017

Last year, we launched a virtual tour of Petra and more than 30 historical sites across Jordan in Google Street View. The interactive Maps experience took visitors on an intimate journey into Jordan’s lost city of stone—and now, we’ve made this historic trek even more immersive with a 360º experience for Google Cardboard.  

Petra_Blog_Cardboard_Creative_Grey_V3.jpg

We’ve used 360º mapping, aerial imagery and millions of photos stitched together, to recreate six of Petra’s most beautiful and iconic panoramas for you to explore. Audio narration, interactive hotspots and sound effects guide you as you follow the footsteps of the ancient Nabataeans. This 2000-year-old civilization miraculously transformed the harshest of deserts into an oasis of life and culture.

Wander through the winding pathway of Al Siq to the Treasury, Petra’s most famous landmark. Look all around in 360º to explore every detail of this elaborate carved facade recognizable from movies like “Indiana Jones” and “Transformers.”

Treasury_600x338_Grey.gif

Make your way past Petra’s carved theatre and hidden tombs until you reach Al Deir, or the Monastery. No trip to Petra is complete without staring up in awe at its grandeur. The doorway alone is eight meters tall!

Monastery_600x338_blog_grey.gif

Of course, nothing can compare to visiting Petra in real life. But now anyone with an internet connection can trek this remarkable UNESCO Heritage Site like never before—and we hope this 360º experience inspires a new generation of tourists to come to visit the rose-red city for themselves. Start your tour now on your mobile phone at g.co/PetraVR.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/RwCxBNscBrI/

Don’t let a spotty connection stop you from searching

Category: Google | Jan 17, 2017

Whether you’re a commuter reading the news with a spotty network, a farmer looking up crop prices with no service in the fields, or just driving through a tunnel, all is not lost when your search is interrupted by a bad connection. Now on the Google app for Android, even if your search fails, Google will deliver your results as soon as a connection is available—so you can keep searching with a single tap.

Mobile networks can sometimes be inconsistent or spotty, which means that even if you have a connection when you start your search, it might fail before you get your results back. With this change, search results are saved as soon as they are retrieved, even if you lose connection afterwards or go into airplane mode. So the next time you lose service, feel free to queue up your searches, put your phone away and carry on with your day. The Google app will work behind-the-scenes to detect when a connection is available again and deliver your search results once completed.

english_1A.gif

And if you’re worried about data charges or preserving battery life, don’t fret. This feature won’t drain your battery, and by fetching streamlined search results pages, it minimally impacts data usage.

So before you head out the door, make sure the Google app is running the latest version for Android, and the next time you hit a spotty network, your results are covered.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/6dsSHV26FPw/

Silence speaks louder than words when finding malware

Category: Google | Jan 17, 2017

In Android Security, we’re constantly working to better understand how to make Android devices operate more smoothly and securely. One security solution included on all devices with Google Play is Verify apps. Verify apps checks if there are Potentially Harmful Apps (PHAs) on your device. If a PHA is found, Verify apps warns the user and enables them to uninstall the app.

But, sometimes devices stop checking up with Verify apps. This may happen for a non-security related reason, like buying a new phone, or, it could mean something more concerning is going on. When a device stops checking up with Verify apps, it is considered Dead or Insecure (DOI). An app with a high enough percentage of DOI devices downloading it, is considered a DOI app. We use the DOI metric, along with the other security systems to help determine if an app is a PHA to protect Android users. Additionally, when we discover vulnerabilities, we patch Android devices with our security update system.

This blog post explores the Android Security team’s research to identify the security-related reasons that devices stop working and prevent it from happening in the future.

Flagging DOI Apps

To understand this problem more deeply, the Android Security team correlates app install attempts and DOI devices to find apps that harm the device in order to protect our users.

With these factors in mind, we then focus on ‘retention’. A device is considered retained if it continues to perform periodic Verify apps security check ups after an app download. If it doesn’t, it’s considered potentially dead or insecure (DOI). An app’s retention rate is the percentage of all retained devices that downloaded the app in one day. Because retention is a strong indicator of device health, we work to maximize the ecosystem’s retention rate.

Therefore, we use an app DOI scorer, which assumes that all apps should have a similar device retention rate. If an app’s retention rate is a couple of standard deviations lower than average, the DOI scorer flags it. A common way to calculate the number of standard deviations from the average is called a Z-score. The equation for the Z-score is below.

Z-score for Dead or Insecure devices

  • N = Number of devices that downloaded the app.
  • x = Number of retained devices that downloaded the app.
  • p = Probability of a device downloading any app will be retained.

In this context, we call the Z-score of an app’s retention rate a DOI score. The DOI score indicates an app has a statistically significant lower retention rate if the Z-score is much less than -3.7. This means that if the null hypothesis is true, there is much less than a 0.01% chance the magnitude of the Z-score being as high. In this case, the null hypothesis means the app accidently correlated with lower retention rate independent of what the app does.

This allows for percolation of extreme apps (with low retention rate and high number of downloads) to the top of the DOI list. From there, we combine the DOI score with other information to determine whether to classify the app as a PHA. We then use Verify apps to remove existing installs of the app and prevent future installs of the app.

Android security checkups for DOI devices

Difference between a regular and DOI app download on the same device

Results in the wild

Among others, the DOI score flagged many apps in three well known malware families— Hummingbad, Ghost Push, and Gooligan. Although they behave differently, the DOI scorer flagged over 25,000 apps in these three families of malware because they can degrade the Android experience to such an extent that a non-negligible amount of users factory reset or abandon their devices. This approach provides us with another perspective to discover PHAs and block them before they gain popularity. Without the DOI scorer, many of these apps would have escaped the extra scrutiny of a manual review.

The DOI scorer and all of Android’s anti-malware work is one of multiple layers protecting users and developers on Android. For an overview of Android’s security and transparency efforts, check out our page.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/0gmYJz-OeBE/

Making Google+ work better for you

Category: Google | Jan 17, 2017

For the past few years, we’ve been doing a lot of listening on the Google+ team, and we’ve learned a lot.

Listening to your feedback inspired us to introduce a new Google+ focused on helping you connect around shared interests a little over a year ago. Your feedback led us to launch more than 50 updates across Android, iOS and web to ensure the new experience serves you even better than the previous one. Big changes like powerful tools for Community moderators, image comments and joining the G Suite family were all thanks to your input.

After all of these updates, more people are discovering vibrant Communities and creating inspiring Collections than ever before. So it’s in this same spirit that we’re pleased to add three new much requested updates, rolling out over the next couple of weeks, to Google+.

Hiding low-quality comments

We’re making it easier to have good conversations by hiding lower quality comments on posts, so you can focus on the comments that matter most. If you’d like to see all the comments on a post, you can always click or tap “View more comments.”

Hiding low quality comments

Showing you more of what matters

To help you see more of the stuff you care about, we’ve adjusted Google+ to make the best use of your screen size and show you less white space and more posts. Photographers share big, beautiful images on Google+ every day, so we’ve also added zoom functionality to photos on Google+ web to let you get up close and personal with the images you’re interested in.

Paris full and zoom

Bringing back Events

Finally (drumroll please!), we’re bringing Events over to the new Google+. While there’s more to be done to improve the experience, beginning January 24th you’ll be able to create and join events on Google+ web as you have in the past. Please note that Events will not be available for G Suite at this time.

With this latest round of updates, we believe the new Google+ is really your Google+— designed around your suggestions, requests and needs. It also means it’s time to say goodbye to classic Google+ on the web, which we’ll be turning down on January 24.

Just because we’re bidding adieu to classic Google+ doesn’t mean we’re done working on the new one. Our aim is to make Google+ the best place to connect around the things you care about, so please use the “Send Feedback” link in the apps and on the web to keep the feedback coming. We’re listening.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/MbrCMJaLm5w/

Zurich calling – Expanding our European tech hub

Category: Google | Jan 17, 2017

The future of research and development for Google in Europe may well lie in Zurich. Currently housing over 2,000 Googlers from 75 countries, this winter we’ve expanded our presence along the Limmat River, giving us room to expand to 5,000 people. Zurich, already the largest Google development centre outside of the U.S. and housing teams working on Google Search, Maps, Calendar, YouTube and Gmail, will now be the European homebase for our exploration of research and implementation of machine learning.

Millions of people around the world are already using internet services developed and managed by the Google teams in Zurich–products used by individuals or, like many leading European companies do, to improve the efficiency of business processes. By adding new offices in Europaallee next to the Zurich train station, Google Switzerland is creating even more space for innovation.

The new Google Europe Research Team has been based in Zurich since June 2016, working on the future issue of machine learning and focusing on natural speech recognition and reproduction. The work is used in services such as Google Assistant, Google Photos or Google Translate.

“Google is now deeply rooted in Zurich. I am very pleased that Google has chosen to invest in Zurich – both in jobs and new offices. The opening of the new office shows that Zurich – with its high quality of life, close proximity to institutions of applied sciences and universities, and modern infrastructure – is an attractive location for ICT companies and businesses in general,” Zurich’s mayor Corine Mauch said, expressing her pleasure at Google’s additional investment in Zurich.

In addition to fostering in-house talent, Google Switzerland is campaigning for stronger education in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) education in the country including partnerships designed to strengthen programming skills and media competency in Switzerland. Starting in autumn 2017, Google will begin training IT apprentices in the new offices, and together with the academic community, including ETH in Zurich and EPFL, we’re working on research partnerships on machine learning, machine perception, and computer systems.

We’re also working to support Switzerland’s SME community via the exportdigital.ch platform, created in collaboration with Switzerland Global Enterprise. Through this online portal, part of Google’s Growth Engine efforts, companies and individuals can access digital know-how to open doors to potential export markets around the world. During the past three years, more than 30,000 people have taken these courses.

And because Google itself started out in a garage–we believe that big ideas often start small–Google is a founding member of the digitalswitzerland association working to position Switzerland as an international digital hub.

We believe that partnerships–in economics, research, and policy–are important factors in this success for Switzerland. That’s why we’re delighted for the opportunity to be at the heart of Zurich during such exciting times through research agreements, continuing education initiatives for SMEs, and initiatives like digitalswitzerland to promote innovation at and for the site. We’re optimistic about the latest expansion and to continue working together with our partners to increase innovation in Switzerland and to shape the future.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/B96La1n4dKg/

Five ways retailers can provide personal, convenient customer service using Chrome

Category: Google | Jan 13, 2017

Successful retail outlets are always striving to improve customer service. Brick-and-mortar stores are borrowing a page from their online counterparts and turning to new technologies like Chrome to help make shopping easier and more fun for customers. Here are five ways retailers are using Chrome to personalize shopping, manage ad campaigns, offer local information and speed up the ordering process:

Personalized shopping

The best retail experience is personalized and relevant. Putting umbrellas and raincoats in front of a store during a rainstorm, for example, boosts inbound traffic and makes satisfied — and dry —  customers. But other than displaying umbrellas in the windows, how can a store advertise a spur of the moment promotion like that?  

Chico’s, a women’s apparel and accessories chain, uses Chromeboxes to tailor promotions across its U.S. stores. While bikinis are featured in digital displays in Florida, coats might be featured in Chicago and cocktail dresses in Las Vegas. Chico’s is working on bringing personalized content to 5,000 screens in its stores.

Express ordering

Australia’s Famous Fish by Steve Costi restaurant chain is mixing the best of self-service technology with old-world aesthetics. They introduced kiosk-based interactive menu boards based on Chrome which let people place their orders. This means customers have shorter lines and they get their food faster too.

Customer order kiosk at Famous Fish

Customers are pleased, and there’s been a noticeable boost to the bottom line. At the company’s Fountain Gate location, for example, average orders are 28.7% higher when customers use the kiosks. “Combining self-service touch screens with dynamic menu boards, the commercial Chrome technology is already providing a huge return on investment,” says Jon Sully, director of Famous Fish. “We’re seeing a noticeable increase in brand awareness and a large boost in customer spend.”

Going local

Where are the fish biting today? If you’re a sporting goods store and answer that for your customers, they’ll stay loyal for life. Scheels, a sporting-goods chain with 26 stores in 11 states, uses Chrome digital signs to display information about nearby river conditions and advice on the latest equipment and local fishing techniques. “They’re incredibly popular features that have helped build customer loyalty,” says Josh Diemert, lead systems administrator for Scheels.

Scheels also lets customers place orders using in-store kiosks. That frees up staff to provide more specialized service to individual customers. “We’ve taken the in-store experience to a new level by leveraging technology to make shopping fun, while at the same time empowering our sales team to deliver a better quality of service,” says Diemert.

Managing hundreds of campaigns

Store managers have a lot on their plates, and managing in-store digital signage campaigns can distract them from their most important work of helping customers and supporting their staff. Compass Group Canada turned to Chrome digital signage for promoting in-store offers in its restaurants and coffee shops. One marketer can now manage dozens of campaigns using Chrome Device Management, saving hundreds of hours of work a week. And campaigns are carefully tracked to make sure they perform well, leading to a 2% to 4% sales boost, which adds up for a company with $2 billion in annual revenue.

Bring more employees and processes online

If more retail employees have better access to computing, stores can move many of their processes online and make them more efficient. This includes everything from inventory checks, HR tasks, employee training on new store offerings, shift coordination, and marketing activities. The challenge has always been that it’s expensive to get a device for each employee, and it’s insecure to share a typical PC amongst multiple employees.

Chromebooks can be shared seamlessly between many employees, and any employee can pick up any device, log in, and get a secure workspace with access to all of their applications  By deploying a few Chromebooks in the back office of a store, retailers can give all of their employees secure access to computing, operate their stores more efficiently, and make sure that their employees are well trained on the latest products.

Find out more about how Google is ready to support and grow your retail business at our NRF BIG Show booth (#4333) in New York City, January 15th – 17th. Those who can’t attend the show can learn more here about how retailers can use Chrome digital signage and devices to engage customers.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/bxT2yZ8DBd8/

Five ways retailers can provide personal, convenient customer service using Chrome

Category: Google | Jan 13, 2017

Successful retail outlets are always striving to improve customer service. Brick-and-mortar stores are borrowing a page from their online counterparts and turning to new technologies like Chrome to help make shopping easier and more fun for customers. Here are five ways retailers are using Chrome to personalize shopping, manage ad campaigns, offer local information and speed up the ordering process:

Personalized shopping

The best retail experience is personalized and relevant. Putting umbrellas and raincoats in front of a store during a rainstorm, for example, boosts inbound traffic and makes satisfied — and dry —  customers. But other than displaying umbrellas in the windows, how can a store advertise a spur of the moment promotion like that?  

Chico’s, a women’s apparel and accessories chain, uses Chromeboxes to tailor promotions across its U.S. stores. While bikinis are featured in digital displays in Florida, coats might be featured in Chicago and cocktail dresses in Las Vegas. Chico’s is working on bringing personalized content to 5,000 screens in its stores.

Express ordering

Australia’s Famous Fish by Steve Costi restaurant chain is mixing the best of self-service technology with old-world aesthetics. They introduced kiosk-based interactive menu boards based on Chrome which let people place their orders. This means customers have shorter lines and they get their food faster too.

Customer order kiosk at Famous Fish

Customers are pleased, and there’s been a noticeable boost to the bottom line. At the company’s Fountain Gate location, for example, average orders are 28.7% higher when customers use the kiosks. “Combining self-service touch screens with dynamic menu boards, the commercial Chrome technology is already providing a huge return on investment,” says Jon Sully, director of Famous Fish. “We’re seeing a noticeable increase in brand awareness and a large boost in customer spend.”

Going local

Where are the fish biting today? If you’re a sporting goods store and answer that for your customers, they’ll stay loyal for life. Scheels, a sporting-goods chain with 26 stores in 11 states, uses Chrome digital signs to display information about nearby river conditions and advice on the latest equipment and local fishing techniques. “They’re incredibly popular features that have helped build customer loyalty,” says Josh Diemert, lead systems administrator for Scheels.

Scheels also lets customers place orders using in-store kiosks. That frees up staff to provide more specialized service to individual customers. “We’ve taken the in-store experience to a new level by leveraging technology to make shopping fun, while at the same time empowering our sales team to deliver a better quality of service,” says Diemert.

Managing hundreds of campaigns

Store managers have a lot on their plates, and managing in-store digital signage campaigns can distract them from their most important work of helping customers and supporting their staff. Compass Group Canada turned to Chrome digital signage for promoting in-store offers in its restaurants and coffee shops. One marketer can now manage dozens of campaigns using Chrome Device Management, saving hundreds of hours of work a week. And campaigns are carefully tracked to make sure they perform well, leading to a 2% to 4% sales boost, which adds up for a company with $2 billion in annual revenue.

Bring more employees and processes online

If more retail employees have better access to computing, stores can move many of their processes online and make them more efficient. This includes everything from inventory checks, HR tasks, employee training on new store offerings, shift coordination, and marketing activities. The challenge has always been that it’s expensive to get a device for each employee, and it’s insecure to share a typical PC amongst multiple employees.

Chromebooks can be shared seamlessly between many employees, and any employee can pick up any device, log in, and get a secure workspace with access to all of their applications  By deploying a few Chromebooks in the back office of a store, retailers can give all of their employees secure access to computing, operate their stores more efficiently, and make sure that their employees are well trained on the latest products.

Find out more about how Google is ready to support and grow your retail business at our NRF BIG Show booth (#4333) in New York City, January 15th – 17th. Those who can’t attend the show can learn more here about how retailers can use Chrome digital signage and devices to engage customers.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/DuDvBEGAbnY/

Google Play Music’s “Ones to Watch” Artists in 2017

Category: Google | Jan 12, 2017

Everyone loves to be one of the first to discover a new up-and-coming artist before they make it, but with thousands of thriving artists out there launching new music daily, discovering the next big musical breakthrough isn’t easy. Google Play Music has you covered! After hours of listening, analyzing and discussing who you should keep your eye (or ear) on this year, our team of music experts put together a list of the top 10 “Ones to Watch” in 2017—and a new playlist featuring top tracks from these rising stars.

Google Play Music’s ‘Ones to Watch’ for 2017

  1. Lost Kings
  2. Kodie Shane
  3. Bishop Briggs
  4. Midland
  5. Allison Crutchfield
  6. Aminé
  7. Maggie Rogers
  8. Kamaiyah
  9. Kehlani
  10. Rag’n’Bone Man

So, how did we select our “Ones to Watch” list? Our Google Play Music editorial team locked themselves in a room (well, sort of) and considered everything from track performance on Pop Before It Breaks and Blogged 50 to Google search counts and social media reach, to just pure, inalienable music expert gut instinct. Then, by way of committee, lots of strong coffee, some heated debates, and even more coffee, the final 10 artists were chosen.

Listen now so that when one of their singles hits the radio, you can say with confidence that you heard it first.


Learn more about the 2017 “Ones to Watch” Artists:

Lost Kings

EDM duo Lost Kings scored an Internet hit in 2015 with the Carl Carlton via Chris Brown “Bad.” Their latest single, “Phone Down,” with singer and hit songwriter Emily Warren shows how they could follow in the The Chainsmokers’ footsteps from the blogs onto the pop charts. For fans of: The Chainsmokers, Classixx, Matoma.

Kodie Shane

Atlanta’s Kodie Shane opened her debut mixtape with “Drip In My Walk,” one of the best do-it-for-the-Vine,Travolta-in-white-polyester swagger anthems we heard in 2016. “Baby, you know I’m a star!” Here’s hoping 2017 is the year that becomes incontrovertible. For fans of Lil Yachty, Dreezy, D.R.A.M.

Bishop Briggs

Bound to be a festival favorite this year, Bishop Briggs brings energy and an almost manic array of beats to her dark synth-pop. With a soulful voice that packs a punch, Briggs snagged an opening spot on Coldplay’s stadium tour, a long way from the karaoke bars she performed in growing up. For fans of: BANKS, Alessia Cara, St. Vincent.

Midland

Gracefully nodding to ’70s and ’80s country with a modern twist, Texas trio Midland are poised to bring back traditionalism to the country airwaves. Their harmonies and classic steel guitar evoke the Old West erasing the bro-country invasion of recent years. For fans of: George Strait, Dwight Yoakam, The Eagles.

Allison Crutchfield

Twin sister and erstwhile bandmate of Waxahatchee’s Katie Crutchfield, Allison Crutchfield is a powerful indie rock singer-songwriter in her own right. “Dean’s Room” is a propulsive and buoyant power-pop number from forthcoming the album “Tourists in This Town,” which showcases Crutchfield’s softer songwriting. For fans of: Angel Olsen, Mitski, Courtney Barnett.

Aminé

If Clipse and Pharrell wrote a love song, it would probably sound like “Caroline,” the off-kilter and impossibly catchy debut song from Portland, OR native Aminé. We’ll be eagerly anticipating his debut album this year. For fans of: Rae Sremmurd, The Neptunes, Tarantino movies.  

Maggie Rogers

Hand-picked and boosted to viral fame by no less powerful a taste-maker than Pharrell, young singer-songwriter Maggie Rogers is bound for big things in 2017 and beyond. “Alaska,” the song that started it all, is an infectious, alternately frosty and thawed-out blend of electro-pop, R&B, and Rogers’ roots in indie folk. For fans of: BANKS, Tove Lo, Låpsley.

Kamaiyah

This Bay Area MC has already held her own against Drake and Y.G., when she released a critically acclaimed mixtape and rhymed her own name with “please retire.” When that flat, unflappably boss flow of hers rolls by, you will sit up and pay attention. For fans of: Lil Yachty, Young Jeezy, D.R.A.M.

Kehlani

Listen to this Oakland R&B singer’s cooing confession about needing a “Gangsta” on the “Suicide Squad” soundtrack. If you prefer your slinky, intimate soul sans the Jared Leto association, there was also the commanding, ubiquitous 2016 single “CRZY” to get you hooked. The first tracks off her major label debut (out Jan. 27) suggests an even wider range. For fans of: Jhené Aiko, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Tinashe.

Rag’n’Bone Man

Rag’n’Bone Man has already scored a top 10 hit in Germany and his native U.K. with the hip-hop meets blues stomper “Human.” Expect this aggro-tender song to turn up in every “gritty” movie trailer after his debut album drops in February. For fans of: Hozier, Imagine Dragons, impressive beards.

From: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/blogspot/MKuf/~3/giEH8DEpJ6w/