Business google

email Gmail Google+

Following on from my previous comments re emailing to Google+ connections not working it now is. I’ve just sent someone an email. I already had their email address but presumably not in that Gmail Contacts list. So Gmail offered to send the email to the person’s Google+ account. Just made it quicker for me.

I’m starting to use contact details from multiple social platforms now. Earlier this afternoon sent someone an email to an address they had in their LinkedIn profile.

What’s not to like?



Business online safety security spam

Gmail update – Google+ comment

gmail_updateGot an email yesterday from Google about a change to Gmail. Everyone probably got the same mail. Certainly the mainstream media made big news of it, in the tech sections. When you are sending an email from a gmail account you will now be offered Google+ account holders as recipients of the mail.

One site, whose name is oft misspelled, even published a post on how to change your settings to stop people from being able to contact you via Google+. This would appear to me to be a blatant sop to search engine rankings – a big part of the email I got was all about explaining exactly this so the repetition of this info seemed particularly unnecessary. Whoever gets news out first attracts the visitors so it’s dog eat dog out there in the www.

Anyway “starting this week, when you’re composing a new email, Gmail will suggest your Google+ connections as recipients, even if you haven’t exchanged email addresses yet. Your email address isn’t visible to your Google+ connections until you send them an email, and their email addresses are not visible to you until they respond.

I’ve tried but I can’t seem to get it to work. I guess “this week” must mean “next week” or at least from Monday onwards.

If someone from outside your Google+ Circles emails you then the mail gets filtered into the “Social” tab in your inbox. In my case this means it is unlikely to get read because I never look in that tab. I don’t look in the “promotions” tab either unless I’m expecting a particular mail – eg a password reset.

The tone of the online commentary about this “feature” is in the vein of “Google trying to increase/stimulate Google+ usage” and also all about privacy.

In my mind this is a very useful feature. I want people to be able to get hold of me. The principle is no different to your telephone number. Unless you want to be ex-directory anyone can look up your number. Of course there is the concern about spam but Google has a fantastic antic-spam engine and if it turns out to be “legitimate” spam from a business then this gets filtered into the “promotions” tab as previously mentioned. You can also label a sender as being a spammer which I frequently do if the email addresses me as “Hi”.

So all in all I think this is good. Except as I mentioned it doesn’t seem to work for me! That’s all folks.

Apps End User

Gmail scoop

Call me thick but I’ve just noticed that gmail comes through far more quickly on my Samsung Galaxy S4 Android phone than it does using chrome on my PC. Obvious really innit?

Suggests a natural evolution towards native applications. Will the Chromebook one day really take the place of the Microsoft PC. In one sense this thinking flies in the face of my predictions that the PC will die off but I guess that this will be a long and agonisingly slow death and there will be room for other plays in the meantime.

Ve shall see.

datacentre End User internet

Gmail Down for the Morning Yesterday

Google themselves use Gmail, so someone certainly noticed that the service was down.

Gmail email was down yesterday, you may have noticed.  Certainly you might if you were one of their 113m strong userbase although I imagine that most are consumers and because it happened in business time it may not have had that significant an impact.

The service fell over because one of Google’s European datacentres failed which in turn had a knock on effect on some of their other datacentres. I have recently been visiting datacentres with a view to planning our next phase of expansion. Datacentres are rated in Tiers from 1 to 4, 4 being the most secure reliable and therefore most expensive.

In a Tier 4 datacentre you will find the ultimate in security mechanisms, biometric security, weighing machines etc. You also find the highest levels of resilience to power and connectivity failure. I was interested to learn recently though that there is a sensible limit to how much it is worth spending on a data centre as even Tier 4’s have been shown by modelling that they are vulnerable to catastrophic chain reaction failures .

I don’t know what Tier datacentres are operated by Google but they do employ someone specifically to manage reliability of their site. It just goes to show that when software and computers are concerned there is no such things as a 100% reliability.

In this case if you are totally reliant on a single email system it seems that there will always be a potential reliability issue. What you can do is have a totally separate mail system coming from a separate platform. I use both from an Exchange server and from our ISP platform.

Although I don’t ever recall the ISP mail platform letting me down certainly the Microsoft product has occasionally given me cause to resort to the backup. With a backup you can always call someone and ask them to resend to the other mail address and also use it yourself to send.

Most people have a personal email address but you might not want to give that out to a business acquaintance and in any event this type of email typically has file size storage and download restrictions. I’m sure others will have views on this subject but that’s my five pence worth.