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Docs by Microsoft and Facebook

April 22nd, 2010 No comments
Docs by Microsoft and Facebook

Docs by Microsoft and Facebook

Look out Google because Microsoft and Facebook are teaming up to challenge Google Docs online document sharing.

Microsoft Docs looks like a real threat to Google Docs because simply Microsoft still makes a better word processor than Google. Facebook’s crowd sourcing and social networking platform creates a true online desktop and utility for productivity. Docs also have a simple domain name that people can remember http://www.docs.com.

Google needs to respond with a true social networking strategy by merging their Gmail, YouTube, and Picassa audience to a single destination to share and communicate more seamlessly. They have made a pathway so far with integrating Buzz into Gmail. It was disappointing, however, that Google Wave was still a separate destination that needed another active conversion for adoption. Furthermore, their UI across different sites like Gmail, YouTube, and Picassa do not have similar look and feel.

Via http://docs.com

Transfer Your Mobile Number to Google Voice

October 27th, 2009 1 comment

Transfer Your Mobile Number to Google Voice

Transfer Your Mobile Number to Google Voice

I’ve been using Google Voice since it was owned by Grand Central. It is a great platform for managing free calls, SMS, and contacts with intelligence. Now Google Voice lets you port your mobile number from your carrier to Google as well. This way, your voicemail is accessible from the cloud. By allowing Google Voice to manage my voicemail, it solves my issue with AT&T which prevents me from receiving voicemail notifications. Once you receive a voicemail, you can be alerted a number of ways by transcribed email or SMS text messages.

Google Voice can let you have a single phone number that automatically rings to your mobile, work, home and other phones based on rules and settings. For example, calls from your kids will ring all numbers while office related contacts only ring your work number.

The process to move your carrier number to Google Voice requires a few steps. However, it is very worth it in the end.

Via TechCrunch

Dropbox Online Storage and iPhone App

October 5th, 2009 No comments
Dropbox Online Storage and iPhone App

Dropbox Online Storage and iPhone App

Dropbox is an easy to use online file storage that syncs your files across all your computers. I installed it recently and must say it is very intuitive, easy, and fast! You simply go to their website, create and account, and then install on your computer (both Windows and Mac compatible). You can then select your drop box folder to by synced. Files or folders that are in your Dropbox folder are then synchronized online. The performance is great. When you make a change, Dropbox sends the “delta” only to the server thus making the change very quickly. You can also access your files through the website.

The free version begins with 2 Gig of storage space with an additional 1 Gig by referring friends. There is also premium paid version which offers much more.

Dropbox recently released an iPhone application to make it even easier to access your files anywhere in the world. This new iPhone app will let you get access to all your Dropbox documents, PDF’s, pictures, videos and much more. Dropbox also introduced offline viewing in the iPhone app, with “Favorites.” If you add a file to your ‘Favorites’, they’ll be accessible at any time. To do so, just hit the star at the bottom of any file, and it’ll be added. Otherwise, your files stay in the cloud. This is great for people who complain that the iPhone does not offer local file storage. Dropbox offers this and more with automatic sync with their cloud!

Dropbox can also let you share files and folders to anyone in the cloud. The iPhone app also lets you upload pictures and video (with iPhone 3GS).

In just a few days, Dropbox reached over 2 million users. Impressive.

When is Google’s rumored GDrive coming? Google???

Google Docs Now Convert Images to Text

September 29th, 2009 No comments

You can now use Google Docs to perform OCR image-to-text conversions when you upload high-resolution files. It is a nice newly added feature from Google (and of course it is free)

For 3rd party webapps or services that uses Google Docs, they can use this URL parameter to accept JPG, PNG, and GIF files for conversions. Keep in mind this is still in beta.

Tell us what you think of Google Docs OCR performance. Was it good for you?

Google Docs OCR Convert Images To Text

Google Docs OCR Convert Images To Text

Via Life hacker

Google Push Email for iPhone Now Available

September 22nd, 2009 No comments
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Google Push Email and Calender Sync

Dammit.  I just spent $2.99 on an app to give me push Gmail on my iPhone and then Google goes and adds that capability through Google Sync.  Damn you Google, for making what used to cost money free.  Details at the Google Mobile blog.  Thanks to TechCrunch for alerting me.

If you have GSync already set up on your iPhone, all you have to do is go to the Exchange entry and activate the Mail option.  Simple!

Warning – the Google mobile blog servers are apparently mobbed right now, cause performance is slow slow slow.

UPDATE: In the 20 minutes since I activated this service, I’ve noticed three things.

  • You don’t get a popup alert on your screen when new emails come in.  This could be a good or bad thing, depending on your point of view.  You will get  a buzz indicating new mail (if your iPhone is set up for that).
  • There is a definite lag between receipt of email and Google pushing it to your iPhone.  It’s not huge but it can be a couple minutes.  I’m curious as to if this is due to the newness of the service or if it’s normal lag due to using Exchange.  It’s no different than what sometimes happens with the Blackberry, so unless you’re OCD about your email you probably won’t notice it.
  • My Yahoo push email has apparently never worked properly and for whatever reason I do not get my Yahoo mails pushed to my iPhone.  I only noticed this because of how Google’s push works.  Luckily I don’t care about my Yahoo accounts, since they serve as repositories of spam and junk emails for various signup lists.  Plus all my porn user names and passwords.

How To Fix AT&T iPhone Visual Voicemail Notification Alerts

September 22nd, 2009 3 comments
iPhone Visual Voicemail Notification Fix

iPhone Visual Voicemail Notification Fix

One of the most frustrating and surprisingly under reported issues is with AT&T and iPhone Visual Voicemail notifications. When you receive a voicemail on your iPhone, an alert appears and you can play your voicemail as if its a song. There is now a solution!

Since the iPhone 3GS was released, some customers experienced lack of alerts for voicemail (me being one of them). I recently found a fix for it while I was researching tethering for 3GS. Apparently, tethering your iPhone may cause this issue.

So here’s the fix. Navigate to Settings → General → Network → Cellular Data Network and within the Visual Voicemail section add “acds.voicemail” into the APN field. Your visual voicemail will now work once again.

CAUTION: This fix does break the tethering. You can’t have voicemail notifications and Internet tethering work at the same time.

Via Apple Blog

Google Liberates Your Data

September 14th, 2009 No comments
Google Liberates Your Data

Google Liberates Your Data

Google officially launches DataLiberation.org to inform users their expectations on how their private data is exported. Actually, Google has already provided some of this to a certain extent. A few weeks ago, I helped my brother and his wifey export the content from their Blogger site to a self hosted WordPress installation. It was very easy to do. The only things that weren’t transferred were the images which I haven’t figured out how to do yet.

Imagine you want to move out of your apartment. When you ask your landlord about the terms of your previous lease, he says that you are free to leave at any time; however, you cannot take all of your things with you – not your photos, your keepsakes, or your clothing. If you’re like most people, a restriction like this may cause you to rethink moving altogether. Not only is this a bad situation for you as the tenant, but it’s also detrimental to the housing industry as a whole, which no longer has incentive to build better apartments at all.

Google’s Data Liberation movement plans to give users greater control over their data and easier facilities to export and import with Google apps.

Via The Data Liberation Front