Google Lens has a bunch of interesting and helpful features, from identifying your pets in photos to translating text from them. And now Google Lens is about to introduce a new feature that could be a double/edged sword. It could help your kid learn and understand math, but also do quite the opposite and just solve the problem for them.
The new feature is called “Homework” and it uses technology from Socratic, a learning assistant app that Google acquired last year. The goal of the Homework filter is to help students with math problems that they can’t solve. What they should do is simply choose this filter within Google Lens, point the camera at the problem, and highlight the part that gives them trouble. Google will then provide the solution along with steps that led to it. This way, the students will be able to understand the concept and apply it to future problems.
But as I said, this could be a double-edged sword. Students who really want to learn and understand the concepts will use the new feature for this. They will reveal the steps that gave them solutions and rely on them to expand their knowledge. But those students who are anything like I was in high school would just write down the solution and won’t even look at the steps that led to it. I know I sure would do it back in high school, as I never liked math too much.
The new Homework feature isn’t out yet, but we expect it to be rolled out soon. In the meantime, Socratic is still available as a standalone app. I think it’s a great concept if kids use it to actually learn and apply concepts that are giving them trouble. But I hope that parents and teachers will make sure that they don’t use it for cheating.