I have had a google account since they started, being a blogger user before google started GMail and then buying blogger itself, GMail is still in beta strangely although it is getting better all the time I think it’s time they brought it out of beta really, it’s the best email out there with a spam system second to non.
There are plenty of reasons why it’s worth having a google account, of which GMail is really the central to all the rest of the great things you get with a Google account.
Gmail is just so useful. :o)
To start if you haven’t already got one get an account to use and give it a real try out then see if it’s not worth using.
Now you have a Google account to use with the great features of the Google range of products and services, and free too. ;o)
One account log on for everything.
Everything is accessible from within your GMail page which is why mine is my home page and so easy to start from.
On the top left of you Gmail inbox page you will see links to other things you now already have!
These are all accessible without logging in again as long as you stay in your browser you are logged into GMail with.
One reason the “tabs” are so handy now on browsers.
Before you do anything else, while in GMail, go to the “settings” link at the top right, on the next page with settings, scroll down to the bottom and click the “always use https” as shown below.
This means your GMail is safer to open being a secure connection.
On the end of the link list up there on the left is a “more” button which from the drop down menu if you the click “even more” leads you a page with all Googles stuff on one handy page.
Taking advantage of the other great things I feel everyone should get to grips with are the Google reader and docs, the reader is a great time saver when used right, yet many don’t really use RSS on purpose, what I mean by this is the general Internet user uses RSS without knowing it, like on facebook etc.
Understanding the way it works and how to use and read them is very simple and all you need to know can take five min’s to get to grips with.
Click the reader link and it opens in a new tab or window depending on your settings and browser choice, which should be either FireFox or chrome by now, ;o)
Click the “add subscriptions” box as seen above and below once clicked, in that box enter this blogs title, http://robsellen.com and it will “pull the feed” from my blog here and add it to your reader. Just so you know and understand, the feed URL is different to the blog URL…
My feed is the URL that shows in the bottom of your browser when you hover the mouse over that orange icon on the top right here on the blog. THAT is what RSS readers “pull.”
Now you should have this blogs feed working and my blogs content in your reader … looks like the blogs content without the sidebars. ;o)
You can add any other blog or RSS feed into your reader, wherever you see that orange icon or the letters RSS.
In the top of the reader when you have a feed readable you see the drop down menu, ensure it’s the “sort by newest” that’s ticked to only pull any new feeds since the last time you used the reader.
On the right of the reader page you will see the same as the image below.
While only having a feed or two you may want to keep it as “expanded” so the whole feed shows, after a while when you are getting to grips with it and adding new feeds etc you may prefer the “list” so you can just scan the titles to choose what to read.
On the right of you Gmail account you have the other main links to your account, IGoogle is something you may want to look at, the “account” link leads to your main account page.
Another great thing to use is the Google docs, makes a great alternative to word with the added bonus of being able to create PDF’s, and presentations, spreadsheets etc.
All this is web-based so you can download and upload keeping whatever wherever, but being able to access your stuff anywhere you can get online and logged into GMail.
Afer clicking the documents link you should see the same as below.
If you have used word before it will all feel similar but neater. :o)
In my opinion anyway!
You can share your stuff, and let others even work on things with you and all updated as its done, no need to send things etc, just refresh page and whatever changed they make show on yours etc and vice versa. A great collaboration tool for multiple users.
You have a great PDF extraction too, so work on his then donload as a pdf to test in your adobe reader. Very handy for creating fast pdf’s.
Googles Picassa is also a downloadable tool you can use on your pc as a photo organiser, then sync it with your photo storage you get in your google account.
You don’t need to download it though if you rather not, just upload to the webspace you have here, you get links to use as well as embedible code to post on a blog or webpage, although when using blogger and you add a picture to your blogpost it uses this storage and does it all for you.
You now have this great photo storage with Picasa, you just click the photos at the top of your GMail account page and create an album, upload some pics and you are ready to use them, share them etc.
This is so easily usable with your blogger account with you have with Gmail.
Just a simple clicking of the photo icon when creating a post and choosing the picture to upload, publish the post.
Now it is also in your photo page.
Putting this altogether you realise that there is so much you can do for free and yet so easily using these great tools. All the while it’s being improved and added to.
A great reason to have a Google account.