Friday, November 17, 2006

How-To Part 6: Search your chat files

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How-To Part 6: Search your chat files

Quick -- can you remember that restaurant your mom recommended or the joke that got three LOLs and a ROTFL? With chat archiving, you don't have to; you can find your chats in your Gmail account using the same search technology that powers Google.com. Watch this to learn about searching for, and finding, Google Talk chats.

Peter Adams
Online Operations Coordinator

URL: http://googletalk.blogspot.com/2006/11/how-to-part-6-search-your-chat-files.html

Thursday, November 16, 2006

How-To Part 5: File transfers

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How-To Part 5: File transfers

Sometimes, the sound of your friend's voice or the sight of a favorite smiley may not be enough; you might need to connect by sending along your writing portfolio, or a recording of duck calls, or a video of a guy throwing silly putty from the roof of a parking structure.

In the heat of the moment, we can't anticipate what files you may need to send. That's why you can send any file of any size and type, any time. For more on sending files through Google Talk, watch this.

Peter Adams
Online Operations Coordinator

URL: http://googletalk.blogspot.com/2006/11/how-to-part-5-file-transfers.html

Making it easier to specify entire domains

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Google Custom Search: Making it easier to specify entire domains




A number of you have asked for the ability to specify entire domains (such as all the hosts that are part of stanford.edu or all the sites under ca.gov) in your CSEs so that you can more easily build a comprehensive search engine. We listened to your feedback, and starting today you can specify such patterns in your index.

To illustrate the power of this new customization addition, we created a few interesting demo search engines for you to review.

One searches across all the US Department of Energy funded laboratories, which we're calling a National Labs Search Engine. Another one searches across all the Indian Institutes of Technology, which we've called the IIT Search Engine. Please note that these are not CSEs Google will be maintaining; rather, we wanted to show you some possible ways to use this new feature. We hope you find this new addition useful to your Custom Search efforts. Please continue to give us your feedback.

URL: http://googlecustomsearch.blogspot.com/2006/11/making-it-easier-to-specify-entire.html

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

New features are up

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Official Google Docs & Spreadsheets Blog: New features are up



We just released a couple of new features:

  • Document spellcheck in your language
This one has consistently been a top feature request for a looooong time, so we're really excited to have finished it. The document spellcheck now supports more than 30 languages, and we think it's a better quality spellcheck than our old one (it's the same one that Gmail uses, actually).

  • 2 new views of your docs & spreadsheets
For the folks out there who have LOTS of documents and spreadsheets, you can now choose to display only documents, or only spreadsheets. Check out these new "All Documents" and "All Spreadsheets" options from the green-highlighted Browse Docs & Spreadsheets drop-down menu.

As always, we'll be monitoring the discussion group and support email for your feedback.

URL: http://google-d-s.blogspot.com/2006/11/new-features-are-up.html

How-To Part 4: Voicemail

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How-To Part 4: Voicemail

If your friend is away from his or her computer or not logged in to Google Talk at all, you can leave a voice message which will be converted to an MP3 file and sent to their email account. In fact, if you're too nervous to ask out that special friend via direct conversation or have any other reason to want to deliver a message in not-quite-real-time, you can send it directly to voicemail. Learn how by watching this video.

Peter Adams
Online Operations Coordinator

URL: http://googletalk.blogspot.com/2006/11/how-to-part-4-voicemail.html

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

How-To Part 3: Voice Calls

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How-To Part 3: Voice Calls

Eating cereal aside, nobody likes to hear snap, crackle and pop. When we built Google Talk, we focused on voice quality, and our users seem to notice and appreciate that. Whether you're calling your kid at school twenty minutes away or your friend traveling in Bulgaria, you'll get instantaneous communication that's as clear as someone talking to you in the same room.

This video will teach you how to start making your free voice calls.

Peter Adams
Online Operations Coordinator

URL: http://googletalk.blogspot.com/2006/11/how-to-part-3-voice-calls.html

[G] Check out the new Sidebar

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Inside Google Desktop: Check out the new Sidebar



The Google Desktop Sidebar has always been great at delivering content personalized to individual users, ever since it was introduced way back in the second version of Google Desktop. But we kept thinking: what's a better way to deliver this content? In later versions of Google Desktop we let gadgets float on the desktop. But the Sidebar was starting to get a bit jealous and we couldn't restrain it any longer, so now there's Google Desktop 4.5, featuring a Sidebar with a new look.

The new Sidebar is transparent, so it fits seamlessly with your desktop environment. Gadgets that fought for attention now look right at home, and content-heavy gadgets get new frames and icons that make it easier to tell them apart. All of this leads to a better place to find your email, news, feeds, stock prices, weather and other essential information. And this version is compatible with all of the latest software including Microsoft Vista, Office 2007 and Mozilla Firefox 2.0. So what are you waiting for? Try the new Sidebar in Google Desktop now.

URL: http://googledesktop.blogspot.com/2006/11/check-out-new-sidebar.html

Monday, November 13, 2006

Tools to improve your Reader experience

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Tools to improve your Reader experience

As an engineer, one of the things that warms my heart is when users of my product become invested enough in it to want to extend it. I was very happy to see that Reader has begun to attract all sorts of hacks and add-ons that tweak the application to better suit the usage patterns of particular people. It's hard to make an interface that is everything to everyone, and add-ons like these are our best hope of making Reader the ideal feed aggregator for the largest number of people.

Here are a few add-ons that we've discovered recently:

Google Reader Notifier (Mac): This open-source application adds a menu-bar icon which keeps track of new items within your entire reading list or just for a particular tag (the latter is useful for people like me that are subscribed to a lot of feeds and want to know only when the important ones are updated). Troels Bay, the author, has been revving the application on a regular basis, and it's getting better and better.

Gordita: Reader has one-click starring and sharing of items, but you may want to do the same to pages outside of Reader. Gordita lets you create a bookmarklet that allows you to copy Reader items that interest you to del.icio.us, along with all the other items you've bookmarked over the Web.

Google Reader Optimized: This set of user styles maximizes the reading area. When you want to sit down and power through hundreds of items, you may find this compact, stripped-down interface preferable.

Controlling Google Reader with a Cell Phone : This add-on may be a bit out there, but in a nutshell it allows you to control Reader with your Bluetooth cellphone. Perhaps if used in combination with the full-screen style above, you can build your own Reader 10-foot user interface.

Reader Button for the Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer: If you use the Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer, this custom button gives you one-click access to Reader and notifies you of new items via a changing icon.

Updated at 11am with the Toolbar button.

URL: http://googlereader.blogspot.com/2006/11/tools-to-improve-your-reader.html

How-To Part 2: Block or remove contacts

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How-To Part 2: Block or remove contacts

While you're showing Google Talk to your manager, your dentist or your mother-in-law, you might want to add them to your Friends list. But however charming they might be, perhaps you don't want them to stay on your Friends list after the demo. Fortunately, removing a user from your Google Talk Friends list or blocking their ability to chat with you altogether is an easy way to tidy up your contacts without letting them know you've had a change of heart.

To learn how to block or remove someone on your friends list, watch this.

Peter Adams
Online Operations Coordinator

URL: http://googletalk.blogspot.com/2006/11/how-to-part-2-block-or-remove-contacts.html

Sunday, November 12, 2006

New CSE Role Models

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Google Custom Search: New CSE Role Models



You've given us some great feedback so far on the Custom Search Engine (CSE). In particular, many of you have requested more sophisticated examples of existing CSEs, so you can learn from and reference them. We agree that there's no better way to discover its potential than from many examples out there. In response to your requests, we've expanded our featured examples page. It's now filled with dozens of examples that showcase the powerful features of the Custom Search Engine. You can easily browse through a number of categories including Information, Technology, Culture, Lifestyle, Latest, and Google Picks.

This is our first pass at improving our list of example search engines. Moving forward, we plan to continually expand and improve these pages. In the meantime, stay tuned for more updates and keep the feedback coming. We're excited to work with you to make the Custom Search Engine an even more powerful tool.

URL: http://googlecustomsearch.blogspot.com/2006/11/new-cse-role-models.html