Tweet What do you do if the power is out, but you need to charge your cell phone to make an emergency phone call? In this episode of DIY Hacks & How To’s, I show you how to tap the power flowing from your phone line. There is a small amount of electricity that is [...]
Here’s something like 500 million Facebook users around the world, which means that at any given second someone is probably receiving a notification message in their inbox. And if this is correct, that means that the servers at Gmail, MobileMe, and University email accounts are flooded with notifications announcing the arrival of a new comment on a photo, video, or hilarious post that you published on a friend’s page.
Simply put, those emails are really annoying. And we’re sick of them flooding our inboxes and distracting us from getting any work done around here. Chances are you’re also sick of having your inbox look like an ad for Facebook. We’re here to help by showing you how to stop, reduce and organize those emails.
How to turn off any and all Facebook notifications
If those emails are seriously annoying you, all you have to do is head to Account Settings > Notifications and uncheck each and every box so that Facebook stops sending you emails.
Similarly, if you do want Facebook to send you some notifications about certain things–say, for instance, someone posts on your wall–then you can opt in so that you only receive emails about Facebook activity you care about.
Also, in the sidebar you can select the notification settings for different sections and set what kind of emails you’d like to receive from Facebook features like Walls, Places and Events.
We’d suggest that you uncheck the ‘Comments after you on a Wall story’ option, because do you really care about what some other guy said after you on your friend’s wall?
How to make sure that Facebook emails don’t take over your inbox
We like to think that the point of Facebook notifications is to constantly remind our awesome selves that the world really does revolve around us. Also, everyone likes to see that they have new messages in their inbox after a few hours of work. But sometimes you can’t get to all of those notifications and your cluttered inbox suddently becomes a tad overwhelming.
Fortunately, using rules and filters, there’s a way banish this clutter and get back on track to a Facebook-free inbox, while still having your notifications sent to you.
Create a New Label
In Gmail, this is simple. Click on ‘More’ under your labels sidebar, and then select ‘Create New Label.’ Then, this dialog window will pop up:
Label it whatever you like; we stuck with the generic and very obvious ‘Facebook Notifications.’
Create a Filter
Then, it’s time for you to create a new filter. You’ll be using this to send emails sent to you by Facebook to your Facebook Notifications label. You can use this procedure to filter any emails you get. To find out who the email was mailed by and what information you’ll need to properly filter your messages, go to ‘Show Details’ and copy down the address that sent you the notifications.
In this case, it’s facebookmail.com.
Go to Settings in the upper right-hand corner, select Filters, and click on ‘Create a new filter.’ Now, you’ll be asked to input certain search criteria to keep those pesky Facebook notifications from tempting you while you’re at work.
In the filter criteria, put that you want to redirect emails that come from the address facebookmail.com, and this will catch any type of Facebook email that comes to you and funnel it directly to the folder that you set up for it.
When you click ‘Next’ and head to the last page in the Create a Filter walkthrough, make sure to select ‘Skip the Inbox’, ‘Mark as read’ and ‘Apply the label’ to get everything squared off, then select the check box that says ‘Also apply filter to the conversations below’ so that you can easily scope out the Facebook emails that have been sitting in your inbox all this time. When you’re all finished, select ‘Update Filter’ and voila! Now, you have a designated folder for all of your Facebook notifications.
MobileMe users, make sure you do the following via the web-based client rather than through a mail application that you have installed on your desktop. You want these folders and ‘rules’ to apply to your MobileMe account across the board so that even your iPhone isn’t infiltrated with Facebook noise.
Log in to your MobileMe account at Me.com. Under Folders, click the plus sign and create a new folder called ‘Facebook Notifications.’ Then, click the settings icon in the upper right-hand corner and select ‘Rules.’ This dialog window will pop up:
Select ‘From’ from the drop down and input facebookmail.com into the field and make sure your Facebook emails are headed to the Facebook Notifications folder. Don’t forget to click ‘Save’!
When you’re finished, click ‘Done’ and your MobileMe inbox will have been saved from the tyranny that is the Facebook email account. Huzzah!
(Via Mac|Life all.)
Google’s bringing the noise literally. Earlier today, Google announced the availability of a VoIP calling feature for Gmail users, allowing those of us who rock a Googlemail account to call landline and cellular telephones from the comfort of our inbox. The service, currently available only to Gmail users residing in the U.S., will allow for free calls to phones in North America ‘at least the rest of the year.’ While youll be dinged for calls to other countries outside of North America, as those already enjoying the benefits of VoIP will tell you, the cost of those conversations will be significantly less than if they were placed on a conventional home or mobile phone.
From the looks of things, using the service couldn’t be easier: The option to call is included in the same dialogue pane as Gmail users currently find their chat and video options. By clicking ‘Call phone,’ users will bring up a number pad where they can then dial the telephone number.
Pretty sweet, eh? Still, in the face of Google’s recent alliance with Verizon, a company that has a lot to lose in the face of VoIP alternatives to their cellular products, one has to wonder what Google’s game is. Are they getting busy with the not being evil, or is there something up their sleeve? Who knows–in the meantime, let’s all enjoy the free phone call goodness!
(Via Mac|Life all.)
Did you know you can undo a sent e-mail in Gmail? It’s a lesser known feature, but Google just made it even better than it was before. When it first launched, you were given a 5-second window during which you could hit ‘undo.’
Now that’s up to 30 seconds, Google Operating System discovered.
The feature is hidden from most users who don’t know where to look, so here’s a quick guide to avoiding social and workplace faux pas with the click of a button. Be aware that the feature is part of Gmail Labs, though. That means it’s still in testing and it might not always work as intended.
Go to Gmail Labs
Since the Undo Send feature is part of Gmail Labs, you’ll have to navigate to the Gmail Labs page to activate it. Load up Gmail and look in the top-right corner of the page. Between your e-mail address and Settings you’ll see the green Labs icon. Give it a click.
Enable ‘Undo Send’ and Save Your Changes
You’ll be presented with a list of features Google is testing in Gmail. Some are very useful and some are just fun. We’ve gone into more depth on all Gmail Labs has to offer in previous articles, but this time we’re here just for the Undo Send feature.
You’ll usually find it close to the bottom of the list. We’ve included a picture of it above so you know what you’re looking for. Just select Enable then scroll down and save your changes.
Customize Undo Send’s Duration
By default, Gmail gives you a 10-second window of time in which you may undo a sent e-mail. You can change that to five, 20 or 30 seconds by going to Settings (in the top right corner of the main Gmail page, right next to the Labs icon) and finding the Undo Send section inside the ‘General’ tab.
There you can enable or disable Undo Send and change the duration with a drop-down selection box as pictured above.
Write and Send Your E-mail
Now that Undo Send is enabled, it works each time you send a new e-mail. You don’t have to do anything unusual beforehand to make it possible to use Undo Send with that e-mail.
Click the ‘Undo’ Button After You Send
Now you have either five, 10, 20 or 30 seconds to undo your sent e-mail, depending on what you selected under Settings.
As soon as you hit Send, a subtle line of text will appear above your Inbox saying ‘Your message has been sent.’ It will be accompanied by a few extra options. Among them is ‘Undo.’ Click that within the allotted time and your faux pas will be prevented.
Note that you can hit ‘Z’ on your keyboard, the Gmail shortcut for undo. Just don’t navigate away from or close this page, because once you do, you’ll lose the opportunity to undo your sent message forever.
‘Sending Has Been Undone’
You’ll immediately be taken back to the e-mail composition page, and your e-mail will be in draft form, unsent and ready for further editing — or deletion, if writing it was ill-advised to begin with!
If you wanted to change the font, size, or color of your messages in Gmail, you normally have to do so on a mail-by-mail basis. Not so anymore, if you enable a new default text styling option from the Labs.
After enabling the new feature in the Labs menu from Gmail’s settings, head back to the ‘General’ tab and look for the new text box. Set your font, size, color, and other options there, and they’ll stick from message to message. Most of us probably don’t need 18-point purple Garamond text, but, then again, a few subtle changes might help your own missives stand out in your message view.
New in Labs: Default text styling [Official Gmail Blog]
Twitter may be experimenting with a new design, but even its new interface still leaves something to be desired. Tweenky, a new mashup that launched in private beta last week, is looking to offer Twitter users an alternative. The site sports an AJAX-heavy design that borrows heavily from Gmail (which isn’t a bad thing), and integrates a number of features that should appeal to Twitter powerusers. To get one of 200 invites, go here and enter the word ‘techcrunch’ as the invite code.
Users send new tweets from a form at the top of the page that includes integration with link-shortening sites snipurl.com and is.gd. The familiar left sidebar is broken into shortcuts, folders, and a list of hot topics taken from search.twitter.com (formerly Summize). Each folder represents a collapsible lists of keywords and Twitter users that you’ve subscribed to. The site also emulates Twitter’s Track function, which lets you keep tabs on a certain keyword over IM or SMS (Twitter used to have this feature, but disabled it earlier this year).
Tweenky isn’t doing anything revolutionary – all of its features are available elsewhere, either from twitter.com or TwitterSpy, which also provides Twitter’s lost tracking feature. But it brings everything together in a cohesive package that is much more intutive than most other attempts we’ve seen. For more information, check out Orli Yakuel’s introduction to the site.