Gmail adds 13 new languages!

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under gmail, interesting feature, new feature

gmail-logoEmail is a universal way to communicate. No matter where you are, you can reach anyone else in the world with the press of a button. We take it for granted now, but it’s so much easier to keep in touch with people than it was in the old days of pens, paper, and stamps. But there’s still an important barrier we need to overcome to make email truly universal: language. Gmail is already available in 58 languages, and today Google is bringing that total to 71—covering 94 percent of the world’s Internet population and bringing us closer to our goal of making sure that, no matter what language you write in, you can use it in Gmail.

These 13 new languages are joining the Gmail family: Afrikaans, Armenian, Azerbaijani (Azeri), Chinese (Hong Kong), French (Canada), Galician, Georgian, Khmer, Lao, Mongolian, Nepali, Sinhala, and Zulu.

As any native speaker knows, each language has its own nuances, so Google worked closely with linguists to make sure the tone and style are just right. For example, both Hong Kong and Taiwan use traditional Chinese characters. However, you’ll notice that Gmail’s new Chinese (Hong Kong) language uses 收件箱 for “Inbox” instead of 收件匣, which is a word more common in Taiwan.

All 13 languages are rolling out today in Gmail on the web and feature phone browsers. Try out any one of them by going to your Settings. It’s much easier than finding the right postage.


This cool Google Calendar trick makes sure you won’t miss any World Cup matches

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under calendar, interesting feature

In two days, this year’s World Cup kicks off, and no less than 64 games between international teams will take place in various Brazilian cities. To help users better manage their busy daily schedules and still catch as many games as possible, Googler Dan Cobley posted on Google+ a cool Google Calendar trick that makes sure users won’t miss any soccer games.

To insert all World Cup games inside their calendars, users who have Google accounts only need to go to the web version of Google Calendar on a desktop, log into the app with the Google ID, and then select Other Calendars from the left sidebar. From there, users should go to the Add by URL option from the menu and once there paste in the following URL:

https://www.google.com/calendar/feeds/vdmtdcektajkqjk51vvda4ni4k%40group.calendar.google.com/public/basic and then click on Add Calendar.

Once that’s done, the World Cup schedule should be available across devices, and the dates and timings should be converted in the users’ time zones.

Furthermore, this special World Cup calendar should automatically update as “teams qualify and teams get sent home.”


World Cup 2014: Google Calendar


Google Drive on the Desktop at UoB

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under drive, interesting feature, new feature

g-driveGoogle Drive, for those who don’t know, is a product from Google that allows you to:

  • upload any file, of any type, and have it accessible from wherever you have a web browser or mobile device.
  • create and collaborate with others, in real time, across Desktop or Mobile, on Google Docs (hugely similar to Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint)

Although we launched in April 2014 with Google Drive along with Gmail and Calendar – we’ve not publicised it or made any changes to it in that first year. Despite this, a lot of staff have found it by themselves and usage at Bristol is already one of the highest for a Google EDU site, with over  a million files already uploaded or created: http://googleatuob.blogs.ilrt.org/2014/02/13/stats-stats-and-more-christmas-stats/

Beginning now, we’re making Drive easier to use and to access inside the University by installing Google Drive for Desktop on all University managed Windows PCs that are not in open access rooms. This means that you will be able to save directly to Drive from within any of your applications and have that saved file available, anywhere in the world where you have a web browser, Google Drive for Desktop, or a mobile device.

To demo this feature to you, we’ll be running roadshows around the University like we did for the main launch – look out for dates soon!

We hope you find this new service useful and beneficial to your working. You can find more information online at: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/it-services/applications/google-apps/drive/



5 useful Gmail features

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under interesting feature

Gmail’s best features are tucked away in its nooks and crannies. There are endless tricks for Google’s email platform, so we’ll be sharing our favorites every week! Scroll down for our first five pointers, then add your own in the comments. You’re just a few hacks away from becoming an email ninja.

Source: Google Plus user Gmail


Send and Archive

If inbox zero is what you’re trying to achieve, this magic button will help you do it. Once you’ve responded to an email, that conversation will be moved away from the inbox into a digital filing cabinet. Archiving doesn’t mean deleting mail. You can find archived messages in the All Mail tab on the left or with the search bar on top.

To enable Send and Archive, go the the gear icon (top right) > Settings. Under the General tab, find the Send and Archive and select Show Send & Archive in reply.

Read Gmail Offline

The most underrated feature in all of Gmail? Gmail Offline. It’s a Chrome extension that allows you to read, respond to, search, and archive emails without an Internet connection.

Click on the gear icon (top right) > Settings, then click the Gmail Offline tab. You’ll need to let the extension sync and download emails for a little while, before you get offline. And don’t worry — this extension doesn’t take up any space on your hard drive.

Add Emails to Tasks

Responding to email takes a lot of time and energy. If it’s not done immediately, it might never get done. Make sure important emails get attended to by adding them to Tasks. In the upper left, click the Gmail dropdown menu to open your Tasks window. To add an email to Tasks, select it from the inbox or open it, then click the More tab at the top. Select Add to Tasks.


In your Tasks window, you’ll now see a list of emails that need responding to. Click on the task to go directly to the thread without having to search for it!

Mass Unsubscribe

Want to get rid of those newsletters for good? Type “unsubscribe” into the search box, and you’ll probably find every deal, discount, and event email notification you’ve ever signed up for. You can also select all (but make sure to click “select all conversations that match this search” too) to banish historic newsletters from your inbox for good.

Drag Labels Onto Messages

This trick is an oldie but goodie. Drag and drop Gmail labels on top of threads in your inbox. It’s so much easier than clicking on the Label tab and selecting the right category.

(originally posted by our friends at GeekSugar: http://www.geeksugar.com/Tips-Gmail-34542860)


Bring a little something extra to Docs and Sheets with add-ons

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under drive, interesting feature, new feature

You use Google Docs and Sheets to get all sorts of stuff done—whether you’re staying up late to finish that final paper or just getting started on a new project at the office. But to help take some of that work off your shoulders, today Google are launching add-ons—new tools created by developer partners that give you even more features in your documents and spreadsheets.


To browse through add-ons for Docs and Sheets, select Get add-ons in the Add-ons menu of any open document or spreadsheet. (Add-ons for spreadsheets are only available in the new Google Sheets).

Once you install an add-on it will become available across all of your documents or spreadsheets and you can start using it right away.

Here are just a few examples of how add-ons can help you do more with Docs and Sheets:

Get approvals from Docs and Sheets 
Need to gather approvals or feedback? Letter Feed Workflows routes your document to the right people and adds a simple “Approve” button right inside your document or spreadsheet. You’ll be notified as soon as it’s approved, and can publish the final version with a single click.

Print address labels and name tags 
With Avery Label Merge you can seamlessly import addresses or names from Sheets into Docs for printing. Just pick the type of Avery labels you’ll be printing and your document will be formatted to match the layout of your label pack.

Create a bibliography without leaving Docs 
Citing sources is about to get much easier for the millions of students who use Google Docs to write papers. TheEasyBib Bibliography Creator helps you cite books, journals, and websites in MLA, APA, and Chicago style by entering in titles, journal article names, and websites right inside your document.

Send customized emails 
With Merge by Mailchimp you can send customized emails from Google Docs. Use merge tags to pull info from a spreadsheet into your document. Once your data is merged, hit send and your personalized emails will be delivered.

These are just some of the many add-ons that are available for you to use right now in the Docs or Sheets add-on stores, with lots more on the way.



(These are currently rolling out, you may find they are not available to your staff account right now!)


Fun Friday Blog – Chrome + LEGO: You can build whatever you like

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under chrome, interesting feature

chrome-os-2odl-800Think back: you’ve just dumped a bin of LEGO® bricks onto the floor with a satisfying crash, and you have the whole day ahead of you to build whatever you want. There’s something pretty amazing about being able to piece together your ideas with just a collection of colorful bricks.

Well, we think the creative freedom of LEGO bricks shouldn’t be limited to plastic bins—which is the idea behindBuild with Chrome, a collaboration between Chrome and the LEGO Group that brought these colorful bricks to the web using WebGL, a 3D graphics technology. It was originally built by a team in Australia as an experiment, and now we’re opening it up to everybody. So now you can publish your wacky creations to any plot of land in the world.


We’ve added a few new features to make it easier to build and explore this digital world of LEGO creations. To start, you can now sign in with a Google+ account to help find stuff that people in your circles have created. A new categorization system for completed Builds will help you sort and filter for specific types of structures.

To hone your engineering skills and prepare for the upcoming “THE LEGO® MOVIE™ ,” you can explore the Build Academy, a series of short tutorials and challenges featuring characters and structures from the film.

If it feels more natural to use your hands—rather than a mouse—you can build your creations using a touchscreen on your phone or tablet with Chrome for Android support for WebGL on devices with high-end graphics capabilities.

As big fans of LEGO, we’re excited to see what you come up with to fill this new world.


Five Ways to Track Edits in Google Drive

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under drive, interesting feature

There are plenty of benefits to using Google Drive: Sharing files to provide others access, collaborating on revisions to the same document at the same time as others and watching the changes take effect in real-time, and unlimited storage space for Google Documents, Spreadsheets, Presentations, Forms and Drawings. With all these great collaborative features, did you know it is also very easy for you and your team members to keep track of changes that are made to your shared files or folders?

In this blog post, we will highlight some of the features available in Google Drive that help you stay up-to-date on recent modifications to your files stored in the cloud:

  • New Activity Stream
  • Update Indicators
  • Comments
  • Sort by Last Modified
  • Revision History


New Activity Stream

It’s easy to stay aware of what your collaborators have been up to in Google Drive, thanks to the new activity stream in Google Drive. The feature began rolling out to Rapid Release track customers in mid-January, and allows Google Apps for Business, Education and Government users to view recent actions taken on files or folders in Google Drive. Prior to the update, users had an “Activity” point of view available in the left sidebar, where they could view a list of items in order of when they were last edited either by you or others who have access.

Now, with the activity stream feature, you have an overview of who made modifications and a description of what action they took: Edited, renamed, uploaded, shared, commented, moved, etc. To use the activity stream feature, select a file or folder from Google Drive and click the “Details and activity” button in the top, right corner.


Update Indicators

Update indicators in Google Drive make it easy to recognize if a shared file has been changed by a collaborator since you’ve last viewed it. If update indicators are turned on in Drive Settings, the title of updated items will display in bold until you open them to see the changes that were made.

To take advantage of update indicators, click the gear icon in Google Drive and select “Settings.” Next, locate the “Update indicators” section, and ensure the box is checked next to “Bold any updated items.”


Inserting comments in files is a great way to give direction, start a discussion, add a suggestion or ask a question in Google Documents, Spreadsheets or Presentations. If a collaborator is provided “Can edit” or “Can comment” access to your file, they can insert comments to suggest a modification to text, cells or slides. This will be helpful to not only track proposed changes, but also to hold a discussion about the suggested change before taking action on the shared file. When the discussion is over, you can mark a comment as resolved and it will be available to reference later when you click the “Comments” button in the top, right corner of the document.

So, if your team uses a spreadsheet for tracking and manipulating data, you could use comments to seek your team members’ opinions on additions or changes before actually moving forward with edits. Collaborators can reply to the comment, and even mention another team member in the comment. To address your comment to someone, simply add a plus sign before their email address and they will be notified of the comment via email.

Sort by Last Modified

There are multiple sorting options available in Google Drive, so you can view the contents however it makes sense to you. If you’re primary interest is seeing the most recently updated files at the top of your file list, then “Last Modified” is your go-to. To sort your items by Last Modified, click the drop-down arrow in the second or third column in Drive, and select “Last Modified.” Next, click the column header so that “Last Modified” displays in red font. Now, your contents are listed in order of when they were last modified either by you or your collaborators. Plus, you can see the most recent editor’s name with a time or date stamp of when the changes took effect.


Revision History

The revision history tool in Google Drive is perfect for people who like to maintain control over their shared files. Revision history is available from the “File” menu in Google Documents, Spreadsheets, Presentations and Drawings. The tool provides a list of dates and times of when revisions occurred, the editor’s name, and the color that will correspond with his or her changes made throughout the document. When edits were made that you do not agree with, you can select a revision and click “Restore this revision” to move that version of the document to the top of the Revision history list.

(this blog was originally published by our friends at Dito, you can find the original here: http://blog.ditoweb.com/2014/01/five-ways-to-track-edits-in-google-drive.html)


Google Tips and Tricks Every Student (and Staff Member!) Should Know

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under interesting feature

Google provide search and provide Gmail/Calendar etc, but did you know that Google can also help with your maths? or converting units? or even with your research?


Find out more at http://lifehacker.com/google-tips-and-tricks-every-student-should-know-1508121671


new Chrome features

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under chrome, interesting feature, new feature

chrome-os-2odl-800Hopefully by now many of you are familiar with the icon to the left. You’ll recognise it as the icon for Google Chrome, the web-browser that we’ve chosen to recommend in the University for accessing Google Apps as it simply works best with them.

It’s a constantly evolving product and because of the way it updates itself, you should always have the latest version. Google have released some useful features into Chrome this week and you can find them detailed below.



  • You can now track down noisy tabs: You can now visually scan your tabs for a speaker icon to quickly find the ones singing in the background. You’ll also be able to see which tabs are currently using your webcam or are being cast to your TV.


  • Safe Browsing’s malware warning has gotten stronger: If you see this message in the download tray at the bottom of your screen, you can click “Dismiss” knowing that Chrome is working to keep you safe.


(And for those who also use Chrome at home….)

  • Try out supervised users for your family members: You can now use a beta preview of supervised users to help family members who may need some guidance browsing the web. Once you create a supervised user, you can visit chrome.com/manage to review their browsing activity and determine site restrictions.



A new breed of Chrome Apps, now available for Mac too.

Posted by Mally Mclane | Filed under chrome, interesting feature, new feature

A few months ago Google announced Chrome Apps which bring the best of productivity, games and more to your desktop. Starting today, you can access these apps on any computer with Chrome, including Mac. Check them out in the “For your desktop” collection in the Chrome Web Store.

Chrome Apps work offline, update automatically and sync to any computer where you’re signed into Chrome, so you can pick up where you left off. Your Chrome Apps on Mac behave and feel just like native software. For example, you can find your Chrome Apps in the Applications folder on the Dock. Search for apps by name in the Spotlight search—just like any other Mac program that you already use.
To make it even faster to find and launch your favourite Chrome Apps, Google are also releasing the Chrome App Launcher for Mac. Just download a new Chrome App and you’ll see the Chrome App Launcher in your Dock.

We know many of you will be spending time with friends and family this holiday season, so here are a few Chrome Apps to check out:

WeVideo Next makes video editing easy for everyone and accessible from anywhere. You choose the editing mode that suits your level of experience and then trim, adjust, apply themes and publish. And it works offline, so you can get a head start polishing up your family videos on your flight home.

Smartsheet is a project management and collaboration app you can use at work and at home.  Try the dinner planner and holiday card tracker templates to stay organized.

Until AM is a full-fledged DJ setup in a lightweight app. Use the music from the cloud while online or keep the party going with your locally stored songs even when you’re on an unstable internet connection. It’s perfect for hosting that big New Year’s party.

There are many more great Chrome Apps available in the Chrome Web Store. We hope you enjoy them.