Tag Archives: gmail

My First Rule of GChat

HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT GCHAT? My “Answers to Common Questions About Gchat” post may be helpful to you.

GChat Status Let me start by saying this. If you are still using Hotmail or Yahoo or any other type of web-based (or even worse: non-web based!) program that is not Gmail, finish reading this post and then go SIGN UP!

Google is one of those companies of which I am truly in awe. (Facebook, Twitter, Apple, AIM, are others that come to mind). Google’s products have COMPLETELY revolutionized our lives. Gmail, Google’s web-based mail application, simply BROKE THE MOLD and shifted the way we think about e-mail communications.

The first example of Gmail’s uniqueness I can think of at the moment is the threaded conversation feature, which has made it easier to follow the life of an e-mail. And the second is its chat feature within the mail client.

In fact, GChat is to this second era of the internet what American Online and American Instant Messenger were to the first. (And, as I wrote in October, it has helped bring about the convergence of our offline and online identities.) People you e-mail a certain number of times get added to the list of people you can chat with. And there are different ways to alert those people to your availability: you can be available to talk, idle if you’re away from the computer, ask people not to message you if you are busy and, lastly, you can “go invisible”. This last status allows you to view and message your contacts without allowing them to do the same.

In the past few weeks I’ve had several experiences which have led me to the creation of my first rule for GChat: I do not talk to those who have made themselves invisible. Why, you ask?

To begin, I consider myself to be a compassionate and loyal friend who stands by and supports the people she cares about. And, truly, I expect nothing less from the people that I allow to be a part of my life. Yes, those words were chosen carefully – being a part of my life and commanding my friendship are privileges.

When someone is “invisible” it means that they can contact me if they need me, but I can’t contact them to do the same. It ruins any chance at a reciprocal relationship which makes it inherently selfish. And that’s the sort of thing that I just can’t tolerate from those around me.

Listen, folks, I know it seems like such a trivial thing to get caught up in, but I think it’s a small thing that reflects a person’s general personality and that’s why it bothers me.

But, let me turn it over to you. How do you feel about “invisible” people on GChat? Do you yourself have rules for GChat?

HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT GCHAT? My “Answers to Common Questions About Gchat” post may be helpful to you.

tonight’s triumph

As someone who is genuinely interested in emerging technology, it was only a matter of time before I procured the latest “it” gadget – the iPhone 3G.

Yes, this little black book has been constantly in the news for some quite some time now, between trying to find some use for the “outdated” version from last year, controversy regarding international ads (although it’s noteworthy that there even are international ads), and with companies of all types and sizes trying to piggyback on the phone’s success.

Well, I had waited patiently, and even though the whole ordeal of upgrading the family’s current AT&T plan, as well as adding my line, took almost two hours, my spirits were as high as Snoop Dog in Half Baked.

As I left the store, I noticed that I wasn’t able to connect to the internet. No worries. When this continued, I called AT&T just too make sure that everything had been set up correctly. As I explained my situation to the woman on the other end of the line, my phone began to work…. everything except Gmail, which I had – unsuccessfully apparently – set up. (I could get to gmail.com through the web browser, but not through the fun little “mail” icon on the home screen).

I tried deleted and recreating the accounts. I tried turning the phone on and off. I tried not touching the phone will the mailbox was loading. You get the idea…

Long story short, (not so short though, I guess), I finally got my lazy self to the computer and did some research. Apparently:
1. You need to set up the Gmail account as “Other”, not as “Gmail”. (Rather backwards, isn’t it?)
2. You need to make sure that in Gmail, “Don’t always use https” is checked under the General Settings Tab.
3. You need to go to some crazy website – http://www.google.com/accounts/DisplayUnlockCaptcha – to “unlock” your account!

The full discussion that saved the day is here. It’s funny how much better I immediately felt knowing that I hadn’t caused the error!

I LOVE the iPod and Google because I feel like they both have changed the way that we live our lives, but it was such as shame that my first experience with brand new iPhone was so negative. It shouldn’t have taken all evening to get e-mail working!