October 31, 2020

Here’s what’s changing as Google hands off Science Journal to Arduino

Like the world at large, schooling is a bit of a mess right now in these pandemic times. For students at home, that means missing out on precious laboratory time. Science Journal was a Google app that let amateur scientists use the sensors on their phones to perform simple, yet valuable experiments. We say “was” because open-source microcontroller designer Arduino has acquired the app and we have just learned from Google when a big transition will take place.

Arduino actually announced that it was being given the torch from Google last month. It was a sensible partner to take on the task as the two had collaborated on an Arduino-based Science Kit for middle schoolers last year and there are plenty more sensors one can attach to a board than a phone.

A big change like this might be inconvenient during the school year, but there’s plenty of padding around it so as to cause minimal disruption:

  • The Arduino Science Journal app is available to download right now with no major changes in functionality.
  • The Google-made Science Journal app will continue to be on the Play Store until December 11. Google Drive data syncing from experiments and other support mechanisms will also end on this date.
  • Users can export their Google Science Journal experiments into Arduino Science Journal at any time. You can learn how to do that through this Google help page.
  • Arduino Science Journal will receive Google Drive syncing in a future update.

As Science Journal’s source code is open source, anyone can add their adaptations to it. Since Arduino is running it now, expect the app to include more integrations for microcontroller boards from its own brand and others. Of course, it’ll be up to educators to decide where they can invest their extremely limited resources.

Science Journal from Google is available on Android and iOS.

Science Journal
Science Journal

Arduino Science Journal is also available on Android and iOS.

Arduino Science Journal
Arduino Science Journal

More information can be found at the Arduino Science Journal website.

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