I am constantly surprised by the amount of *things* Google does. I enjoyed playing around on Google books and wasted spent some time searching and narrowing my searches using their advanced search box (such a librarian, I know..). I also was amazed at Google translate as I had only vaguely heard about this site, but had not played around on it. I typed in my blog's URL and then translated the page from english to spanish - just because I could!
This site has great potential for explaining information about the library's services and resources to multi-cultural patrons.
I read somewhere - can't remember where - about people being afraid of Google's domination in our online lives. I guess this is where we as librarians need to be able to step up to the plate and teach digital literacy skills that equip our customers to critically think, live and learn in an online environment, I know of many libraries that do this already. I like this quote that I read in an Educause Journal about digital literacies:
Ironically, while some see the profusion of realities as threatening to us, to our children, and even to democracy, the new media is nothing if not simply another way of viewing our world, of interacting with one another, of opening ourselves to learning in realms of possibility we never conceived of before. In our development as higher-order thinkers, multiple realities are far less important to our survival than our ability to understand what we see, to interpret what we experience, to analyze what we are exposed to, and to evaluate what we conclude against criteria that support critical thinking. In the end, it seems far better to have the skills and competencies to comprehend and discriminate within a common language than to be left out, unable to understand.
PS - I am updating my post with my response to a comment on this post. 'Quite ironic really that I completely forgot to include google as a search engine, google reader, You tube, blogger and google scholar. Just goes to show how completely integrated they are within my life that I didn't even think to include them!'