A Year of Gmail

I was cleaning up my mail the other day and I saw my Gmail welcome message from March 4, 2005. I have been using Gmail now for just over a year. The simple statistics are 117 MB used by 3444 emails. There have been 491 spam emails caught in the last 30 days. I have 28 labels set up and 24 filter rules. I have 100 invitations available. I think I have used 6 of them over the last year.

I have at least 4 email addresses forwarding mail to my Gmail account. It has become the central hub of my personal email. I have Mozilla Thunderbird configured to download my Gmail messages using POP. When I am running Windows on my laptop I use Thunderbird to read and send my email. See this post about why that was smart of me . I use Gmail’s authenticated SMTP for my outgoing Thunderbird email. This is great for a laptop since it works from most networks that I connect to, like my cable modem at home, in hotels, or at the offices that I visit for work.

When I am not using my laptop or I am booted into linux on my laptop, I use the Gmail web interface.  I find the web interface to be quite good.  It is certainly superior Yahoo’s interface, or Horde, or Squirrelmail. I almost do not see the text ads on the right side of the page. I have probably not clicked on more than 3 or 4 ads all year. I really like the the fact that Gmail will convert Word files to html for a quick view. I do not understand why people will attach a word file for a a message that is less than a page long. I use the keyboard shortcuts, especially j and k to move to older and newer mails.

I tried to use Gmail for a high volume mailing list, the Ubuntu linux users list. I was able to filter the messages off into their own label and keep them out of the inbox which is important, but I ended up moving that subscription to another account. On a high volume list you want to be able to move through message fast and the web interface did not seem to be up to the task. By the time I gave up I had about 2000 emails and it was quite painful to delete them. Google does not want you deleting things, although they have relented and given us the delete button that we wanted.

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7 Responses to “A Year of Gmail”

  1. You’ve changed your look again!

    I agree with you about Gmail having the best user interface. I need to set up more labels, though…I’m one of those horribly disorganized people who just leaves everything in the Inbox, a holdover from way back when you didn’t have a choice.

    There always was the “Move to Trash” option before they put in the “Delete” button…but you did have to select that option from a drop-down menu. I don’t know why they don’t want to encourage people to delete, though, since it’s not like a lot of stuff is worth saving.

  2. Still looking for the perfect look. Since I am on wordpress.com rather than hosting wordpress myself, I am limited to what they have available. None are perfect, so I try one on for awhile and see how it feels.

    I have heard that Yahoo’s new version that comes from oddpost.com is very good, but if they do not support using POP, I doubt that I will use it heavily. It is still in a closed beta so I do not have personal knowledge of how good it is.

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