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Google - lize Your Life

Google began their free online service in the 90's as as search engine competing with Yahoo! After establishing as the no. 1 search provider, they provided other online services such as Gmail, Google Maps, Docs, Translate, etc. . 

The big acquisition of Blogger (2003), Picasa (2004), Android (2005) and Youtube (2006) puts them on top of web service providers ahead of Microsoft and Yahoo!. Mid last year, they launched a social networking service called Google+ which is a direct competitor with Facebook.Most of their products now feature multiple log-in so you don't need to log off and log in to another account. Google's integration with their products provides users a seamless approach on using the internet.

Here are the brief explanation of their services and products. I might give more details on my coming posts.

Gmail provides the best web-based e-mail service. The features are plentiful and user interface is sleek and user friendly. E-mails can be categorized by labels and grouped by folders. The Inbox can be changed to different types to suit your preferred Inbox's e-mail groupings. Filters, forwarding and POP/IMAP, checking other mails by POP3, chat, themes and experimental Lab features are available. Integration between multiple Gmail accounts including other e-mail services is a big plus so you don't need to log-in to another e-mail account. Spam protection is superb.

Google Search includes searching by everything, images, maps, videos, news, shopping, books. places, blogs, flights, discussion, recipes, applications, patents. You can filter your search results by time, for ex., for the past hour or even the past year. You can also add " " (quotes) between your search terms so it will search exact terms or put - (minus) on a term which you want to exlcude. After Google did a search, you can click the >> beside the searched items to quickly preview the website.

Google Maps provides online street by street details. I used Google Earth which is a free software to quickly provide me information on a certain area including terrain, traffic, actual pictures, etc.

Google Docs features online creation of spreadsheets, document, presnetation, etc. You can even upload your Microsoft Office files and modify them online. Created files in Google Docs can also be downloaded as a Microsoft Office, Open Office or PDF files. Though, features is not completed like Microsoft Office. Sharing and collaboration of files with other people is a plus.

Google Translate offers translation of text or websites. This is very handful if you don't understand other languages. Many websites offer Google Translate so you can easily switch between languages. Most of the time, the translation is correct except for the grammar.

Blogger / Blogspot provides blogging services. It provides bloggers templates, gadgets, Google Analtyics functions and AdSense support. Google Analytics provides web administrators and bloggers detailed information such as tracking of their web site activities and visitor information. AdSense provides advertisements on website which will result to profits for the website owner. The advantage of Blogger over Wordpress is it is user friendly.

Picasa is a software where you can organize, edit and share your photos. Initially, it scans your entire hard drive for photos. Picasa is very good in displaying thousands of pictures compared to Windows Explorer or any other photo viewing software. Picasa Web Albums is an online sharing service where you can upload, edit and share your photos.

Android is a linux base mobile phone operating system. It features great optimization compared to iOS and Windows Phone 7. Developers offer plentiful of applications. Google's own services is tightly integrated with Android. The UI is base on icons much like the iPhone iOS. The latest version, Ice Cream Sandwhich (4.0) offers sleeker interface. 

Youtube is an online video sharing service where you can upload your videos and watch other user's videos. Mostly, I watch MTVs, top 10 of everything and funny videos here.

Google Chrome is a web browser with minimalist interace and optimize tab viewing. It's very fast and highly customizable. It offers synchronization and password manager among others.

Google+ feauture social networking services such as photo sharing, status updates, messaging and Hangouts (video cam). It is a competitor to Facebook. Instead of using Lists to group your friends, they are using circles. Multiple video chat is an advantage to Facebook video chat. Most features are pretty much the same.

Basically, I use Google everytime I'm on the web.  I hope they provide a web storage service where I can host my files such as Dropbox. What keeps Google on top of web companies? They keep innovating.



CarlBytes is a personal technology blog. Contact me at carlbytes [at] gmail {dot} com for any comments and suggestions.

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