Google has announced two new programs, Google Developers Academy and Google Developers University Consortium, to provide education resources to its developer community and to the academic community which uses its tools and developer platforms.
It is intended a a resource where teachers and researchers can communicate with each other and share their materials. Having been in private beta for over six months its Course Catalog already has over 15 courses in its Mobile development section, but not all of them have material that teachers or students could just use.
By contrast the Web development section has an Ajax Turoorial and Code Labs on several APIs that are complete and accessible by individual developers. There is just one item in the Programming Languages section, Rob Pike's hour-long video, Programming with Go.
The Stories section of GDevU currently has contributions from MIT, Barcelona Informatics School, University of Notre Dame and University of Maryland. In his post to existing member of GDevU, Wesley Chun, Developer Advocate at Google, writes:
As far as next steps for the Consortium are concerned, with the influx of new members and the rest of you returning from the summer, I'm hoping that we can continue to create a vibrant place for discussion and exchange of ideas! In addition to course materials, you're also welcome to share any research projects, recently published papers that you've been working on.
Google Academy doesn't rely on third party contributions to the same extent and is more directly designed to help developers improve their skills with Google tools and APIs.
Again some of the initial offerings were previously scattered throughout the Google site but bringing them together and organizing them into Classes around an hour in length split into Lessons lasting 15-20 minutes makes the resources much more accessible. Currently the topics on offer are Google App Engine (in the Cloud Category) Google Drive, Maps, You Tube and Ads. A glance at just one of its classes shows what to expect:
By providing more learning tools and interaction platforms for the global community, we are building and enhancing the skill set of today's and tomorrow's Google developers and helping them build the next generation of awesome apps!
Many programmer develop their skills by trial and error and having more free and easily accessible educational materials should shorten the learning curve and enable more people to make good use of Google APIs.