Friday, January 18, 2008

Official Google Blog: Google India Women in Engineering Award 2008

Google India Women in Engineering Award 2008

An initiative by Google, to encourage Indian women to show off their I.T. skills. Google announces an award, Google India Women in Engineering Award, for the Indian women who are still an aspirants to be full-time into I.T. The eligibility criteria is also not a show stopper for academically excellent computer science students, though it rules out many applications.

Well, this is definitely a brilliantly planned way by Google to publicize themselves as great company to work with. Also, this is a step that will enrich Google's HR database of quality profiles and everyone who is into resourcing, knows that it's worth it.

Information Source: Official Google Blog: Google India Women in Engineering Award 2008

Monday, January 14, 2008

Keyboard Shortcuts: More Than Just yet-another-feature (GMail)

I always loved using shortcuts while working with various desktop UIs. Of course, need for the same was felt while working on Web sites and Web applications too. This requirement was addressed by many leading players in the Webosphere, Google being one of them. However, even with a useful feature such as, shortcuts, there are troubles. Keyboard shortcuts are very useful and increase the work efficiency by a profound degree UNLESS you need not remember them.
Working with different user interfaces, remembering different shortcuts for each one becomes a real hassle. As a result, you end up not utilizing this extra-ordinary feature. As a solution to this problem, various UIs help the user remember the shortcuts by:
  • Showing the quick tips : which are sometimes annoying too, but sometimes, very useful.
  • Mentioning the shortcuts (keyboard equivalanet) next to the commands/links/buttons, or relevant places in the UI : which is not always possible because many commands as appearing on the UI don't have enough UI space to accommodate a shortcut text.
  • Displaying a quick map of keyboard shortcuts: The map of keyboard shortcuts is just one shortcut away, which one can easily remember. An ideal example of this approach can be seen on GMail. It is definitely done brilliantly, the Google way. You can view the following screenshot to view how useful this approach can be:

You can view this shortcut-keystroke map by pressing, SHIFT+?, and then you can make it disappear and return to your original view by simply clicking anywhere outside the appearing chart of shortcuts and keystroke combinations.

This unconventional way of helping the users exploit this less-used yet very useful feature, Keyboard shortcuts, is definitely worth trying out. And, who knows how efficiently this improves your working experience with GMail.

Information source:
Official Gmail Blog: '?' answers your shortcut questions

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Official Gmail Blog: Create personal mailing lists through contact manager

Google Mailing Lists: New feature in GMail.

Google again..adds another useful feature to its one of the most widely used products, GMail. Remember those e-mails that were sent out to everybody in a particular department about an announcement, in your last organization? Of course, that is done using Mailing lists. E-mail addresses of all the relevant recipients are added to a mailing list and then, you never need to worry about who hasn't received an important message.

Gmail now supports customizable mailing lists, to which you can add e-mail addresses from the list of your GMail contacts. Once you add your contacts to mailing lists, you are ready to send a common message to all contacts in your mailing list. All you need to do is, entering the name of that group to the To field while composing an e-mail to be sent to the mailing list.
This saves you the hassle of picking each one of the intended recipients before sending mails. Also, this automatically eleminates the possibility of not adding some e-mail addresses while sending messages.

Mailing lists can be used for various personal and professional purposes. For example, you can send invitations for your evening parties to all invitees without missing anyone. Or, you can send quick and easy update about the change of your contact number to all the important people. Well, there is an endless list of applications of mailing lists to your daily lives. So, it's here for you to check out.

You can find the detailed instructions on, how to create a mailing list in GMail from Official Gmail Blog: Create personal mailing lists through contact manager