has been my email of choice for some time, but only recently that I've learned about some of its 'lesser known features', and especially their potential applicability. In this blog I'd like to describe how some of such features can be used to turn GMail into a handy personal database. For example, quite often I need to store information, such as scriptlets of code, notes, blog ideas, etc.. Before this recent discovery, most of this stuff just floated around in my head or kept piling up as a collection of sticky notes. I kept forgetting good ideas, spent time searching for previously available/discovered information, etc.. This extended even further when I started paying attention to catchy quotes, recording movie names, music tracks, etc... Then it occurred to me how some of already available and known features, such as
can turn GMail into a pretty simple and cool personal database. For example, I just had an idea for a blog, but don't have the time nor ability to record it properly. So I pick up my
favorite mobile device
and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org containing basic ideas and title for my new blog. GMail supports address aliasing, such as adding any word combination after '+'. This becomes very handy in combination with 'labels' and 'filters', since then one can create a 'filter' to assign a 'label' to all emails with 'To' field = 'email@example.com'. Here is an example list of aliases that could be pretty useful: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org etc... On GMail side, setting up following filters will assign labels to selected mail: To: email@example.com -> Blogs To: firstname.lastname@example.org -> Code/Scriptlets To: email@example.com -> Notes To: firstname.lastname@example.org -> Movies To: email@example.com -> Quotes Other possible items could be Ideas, Recipes, Howto's, Todos/Tasks, Stocklist, Wishlist, Shopping list, etc... This seems like a simple enough task, but adds a very handy ability to easily record information that previously was just floating around. Then one can use
to find desired results. For example: label:blogs [search phrase] to find [search phrase] in label 'blogs'. For me, this type of usage transformed GMail into a handy personal storage tool, with ability to record, group and search for information. Other very useful GMail Tips & Tricks can be found
. And if you are a bit programmer savvy, like me, and would like to extract this information, just use any of available mail client API's to tap into GMail, and get your results, possibly for use in other applications or widgets. We hope you find this post useful. Thanks for reading and Aloha!
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