Centuries after the reign of Genghis Khan, Mongolia’s nomadic lifestyle and rugged terrain fill the imagination of many travelers seeking their next adventure...our Street View cars included.

In Ulaanbaatar today, we kicked off collection of imagery at a ceremony with the city’s mayor. A pick-up truck equipped with Google Trekker will explore the streets of the capital before heading to the steppe to bring imagery of Mongolia’s vast and beautiful landscapes to people around the globe.
Our latest Street View vehicle, in front of the Mongolian Parliament Building in Ulaanbaatar, about to head off on its own Mongolian adventure
For those of you who can’t wait, we’ve already added panoramic Street View imagery of a few sites around the capital, including the 13th Century Complex, Genghis Khan Equestrian Statue and Genghis Khan Square.
13th Century Complex
Genghis Khan Equestrian Statue
We're also working with the National Museum of Mongolia, the Bogd Khaan Palace and the Zanazabar Museum of Fine Arts to put their exhibits onto the Google Cultural Institute. Very soon, more people from around the world will be able to admire and learn more about Mongolia’s rich cultural heritage with the click of a mouse.

Posted by Nishant Nair, Street View Program Manager, Google Asia Pacific

Editor’s note: Last month we held the first-ever YouTube FanFest in Korea, a live performance by some of YouTube’s top stars in Korea and around the world. Instead of telling you how much fun the audience had with creators such as 정성하 Sungha Jung, 양띵 YD and Liah Yoo, we invited a fan to share her experiences seeing and meeting her favorite YouTube stars.

Puteri Safia from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

You might ask what a girl from Kuala Lumpur is doing such a long way from home at YouTube FanFest in Korea. I’m actually on a Malaysian government scholarship, studying in Seoul. It wasn’t easy coming here and adjusting to my new life at first, and this is when YouTube became as important as Google Search to me. I slowly learned about Korean culture and language from vloggers like Josh and Ollie who are behind Korean Englishman.

These guys are my inspiration and I’m pretty sure other foreigners currently studying in Korea feel the same way. ​Check out the smiles of me and my friends hanging with Josh and Ollie before the show—we were pretty excited!

We never had the chance to meet any YouTube stars or other famous people back in Malaysia, so coming to FanFest in Seoul was a pretty amazing experience. I even got to meet Sam Tsui and Kurt Schneider. I’ve been a big fan of theirs ever since I watched their version of Don’t Stop Believing five years ago. I love how they add their own touch to their collaborations on cover songs. Here’s a picture of me and Kurt—my sign really got his attention!

The whole show was fantastic and we really got into the spirit of things by dressing up in YouTube’s red and white colors on the night…

My favorite Korean YouTubers SSIN and Sungha Jung were also at FanFest. SSIN uploads useful makeup and beauty tips, and Sungha Jung is a very special YouTube musician. You can see them on stage here with all the other YTFF performers:

Sungha Jung doesn’t say much in his videos, but one thing’s for sure—he speaks to his fans all over the world with his guitar. Here he is performing on the night:

One thing I love about these YouTube stars is how humble they are. It’s also inspiring when you think about how they started from scratch, coming out of nowhere, really. They show the world that if they can do it, so can we!

Posted by Puteri Safia from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Editor’s note: This guest post comes from Dr. Naoyuki Kitamura whose company, Medical Network Systems Inc, relies on the cloud to efficiently power a medical diagnosis system that helps look after the needs of communities in remote parts of Japan.

Japan faces a critical shortage of radiologists. Although major hospitals are well equipped to conduct scans, the scarcity of experts to read the images and give patients their diagnoses means that people—especially those living in rural areas—often have to wait a long time to receive their results. This can have tragic consequences for people with serious conditions.

To address this shortage and help people get accurate diagnoses faster, Medical Network Systems Inc started a remote diagnosis service in 2000. Rather than waiting for patients to come to hospitals, we began bringing the radiology equipment to them in buses. However, we were still short on radiologists who could read the scans, and wanted to find ways to give patients in remote areas access to these specialists.
Last year, our team started using Google Cloud Platform to power our remote-diagnosis systems. Patients used to be given a hard copy of their scan to take to a doctor or specialist. Moving the process to the cloud speeds everything up. Our technicians upload images and scans right from the bus and specialists can then log into the system from wherever they’re working, review the scans and diagnose the patient remotely.

Reading scans is a very specialized process. Radiologists must examine many images in a very particular sequence, and it’s important that there are no lags or that it’s slow. One of the benefits of using Google’s services is that they can handle massive volumes of information efficiently. Google App Engine processes the images and data in the right sequence and enables us to cross-reference patient inputs with existing radiographic and pathological information.

Instead of waiting a few days or a week for a diagnosis, which was the usual turnaround for our teleradiology service, patients can now get their results within a few hours. And it’s not just our patients benefiting from remote diagnosis; enabling our radiologists to work from anywhere has meant that many of our female specialists are able to stay in the workforce. They’re able to work from home and look after their kids at the same time. With so few radiologists in Japan, this flexibility helps us keep skilled technicians in the workforce.

We’re optimistic about the potential for cloud-based technology to enrich our understanding of pathological issues and believe it signals a new chapter for the healthcare industry by removing geographical barriers between patients and doctors.

Posted by Dr. Naoyuki Kitamura, CEO, Medical Network Systems Inc, Japan

Posting a book report on a blog and having the book’s author drop you a personal email soon after...

Running a virtual field trip from Kuala Lumpur to the mangrove forests of Kuala Selangor in Malaysia...

These were only two of the many experiences and great ideas that fifty teachers from across eight countries shared at the first Google Teachers Academy in South East Asia earlier this month. It was exhilarating to see them connect and exchange best practices about how technology can positively change the classroom experience.
Fifty teachers from across Asia  Pacific wear national dress at the Google Teachers Academy in Manila
Thousands of teachers from across Asia Pacific have participated in Google-run educator workshops this year. In the Philippines alone, we’ve worked with 2,435 teachers from 1,383 schools across 13 cities. And in Thailand, together with the Ministry of Education, we’ve helped hundreds of schools expand their cloud-based learning curriculum using Google Apps for Education. For schools like Matthayom Watnairong in Bangkok, this has not only introduced new ways of collaborative learning, but it’s also meant that during the monsoon season, when it was too wet to get to school, students and teachers could conduct virtual lessons to share course materials.

Google Apps for Education is free for educational institutions. Today, it’s being used by more than 40 million students, teachers and administrators around the world. We are constantly building on our suite of web-based tools to improve collaboration and the learning experience in and outside the classroom. Alongside Gmail, Calendar and Google Drive, Classroom helps teachers create and organize assignments, provide feedback, and communicate with their students. We’re also continuously innovating these products to ensure teachers spend more time teaching and less time “tech-ing.”

It’s great to see teachers unlock the potential of the web for learning, and we are humbled to be helping equip students with the tech skills they’ll need in the 21st century. Whether you’re a principal, a school administrator, a professor, a student, or just someone interested in using Google products to help people learn, find out about joining or starting a new Google Educators Group in your area at

Posted by Aileen Apolo, Outreach Program Manager, Google Southeast Asia

Cross-posted from the Google Australia blog

Today at Google Australia, ten non-profits pitched their ideas to a panel of judges in a bid to secure one of four Google Impact Challenge grants. Congratulations to the following non-profits who will each receive AU$500,000 in funding and support from Google:

Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME), for an online game to inspire young Indigenous students to learn maths and science

Engineers Without Borders Australia, for biodigester toilets to provide sanitation and energy in Cambodian communities

Infoxchange, for an app to connect homeless people with social services.

And the winner of the public vote, with more than a quarter of a million votes cast online over the last fortnight, is...

The Fred Hollows Foundation, for a low-cost mobile camera to detect and prevent blindness caused by diabetes.

We were so impressed by the quality of all the finalists’ projects that we decided to award them AU$250,000 each. Congratulations to these six organizations:

Thank you to everyone who voted and a huge congratulations to all ten organizations. We look forward to working alongside you to support your projects and help create a better world, faster.

Posted by Maile Carnegie, Managing Director, Google Australia

500 years ago, King Sejong the Great of Korea led the creation of Hangeul, an alphabet which, in its simplicity, helped more Koreans become literate and communicate more easily. King Sejong would be proud of how little Hangeul has changed over time, and its increasing popularity thanks to Korean superstars like Psy. There’s even a fast growing YouTube channel, TalkToMeInKorean, dedicated to teaching people around the world how to use Hangeul and speak Korean.

Last year we partnered with the National Hangeul Museum in Seoul to promote and make the language more widely accessible. The museum officially opened yesterday and we’re pleased to contribute two dedicated exhibition spaces that utilize technology to encourage more people to discover this fascinating language.

The Hangeul Playground is a fun and interactive way for kids to learn about what lies behind each individual letter in the alphabet. Foreigners who are less familiar with the language can dive into the phonetics of Hangeul, or even use our voice recognition technology to try to spell out their names in Korean. The museum has also created a Hangeul Learning Center website, which explains the development of the Hangeul alphabet and how words are composed using Hangeul’s twenty-nine letters.

Today on the Google Korea homepage there’s a special doodle by designer Sang-bong Lie, commemorating the language. The work shows bits of fabric twisted into the shape of Hangeul letters, representing the exuberance of Koreans’ daily lives. The splashes of color are inspired by dancheong, the paintwork found on traditional wooden buildings throughout Korea.

So head on over to the Hangeul Learning Center, pick up a few words and see if you can decipher the doodle!

Posted by Kate Park, Communications Manager, Google Korea

Japanese horror movie lovers, here’s your chance to create your own scary video just in time for Halloween. We’ve partnered with Legendary Entertainment and master filmmaker Guillermo del Toro — two of the biggest names in the horror industry — to bring a special haunted house set to our YouTube Space in Tokyo and three other locations around the world. Get your application in now for the YouTube House of Horrors for the chance to write, shoot and edit your videos in Tokyo.
The YouTube House of Horrors set in Tokyo

If chosen for the program, your work may appear on the YouTube Spaces channel as well as the official Legendary YouTube channel. Guillermo del Toro will also select his favorite videos coming out of each set, and give their creators a personal rough-cut creative consultation and development session. Watch the video below for a peek at what he’s looking for. To top this off, Legendary will also offer one lucky YouTube creator a development deal to realize the full potential of their idea.

YouTube House of Horrors is our first global YouTube Spaces program dedicated to inspiring video creators to produce daring horror-inspired content. Visit our YouTube Spaces page to learn about the opportunities on offer to participate in workshops and to collaborate with other channels in Tokyo, London, Los Angeles and New York.

Horror can take any shape, form, size or sound, and storytellers across time have sought out new ways to delight their audiences through tales of fear. Now, it’s your turn, Japan. Be curious. Be brave. And above all, be scary.

Posted by David Macdonald, Head of YouTube Spaces, APAC who recently watched Mom's 1st Birthday ママも1歳、おめでとう