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Want to know how your favorite stock is doing each day? Now you can! Google Calendar and Google Finance have teamed up to provide daily stock quotes.

Try searching for your favorite stock symbol in Calendar:



You will then be able to able to see the close price as an event each day.






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You can find labels on the left side of the Gmail window. Labels let you group together emails any way you choose. They also provide an added benefit called multiple inclusion. And that means you can associate a single message with as many labels as you want.

So how does this help you? Let's say you get lots of mail about Xena (you know, the Warrior Princess), and you also get lots of mail from friends. In most mail applications, you could put all messages about Xena in a "Xena" folder and all mail from friends in a "Friends" folder. But when a friend sends you a note about Xena -- well, you could make "Xena" a subfolder of "Friends," which doesn't totally make sense. You could make "Friends" a subfolder of "Xena?" Or maybe make a copy of the mail and put it into both? Sure, if you want to keep track of both, take up twice the space, and forget to delete one if you ever delete the other. Blah!

Now let's say you have Gmail labels. If you get a Xena mail from a friend, just apply the label "Xena" and the label "Friends". Now you can find it in "Xena," you can find it in "Friends" -- and you only have to keep track of one thing.

If you don't get the Xena thing, replace "Xena" with "Buffy". If you still don't get it, replace it with "Britney" or, if all else fails, replace it with "Work." And there you have it.

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Do you have mad video-making skills? OK, how about just a video camera and a little bit of spare time to get creative? A few of us on the Gmail team came up with an idea to stitch together a bunch of video clips that all share one element: someone hands the Gmail M-velope in from the left of the screen, and hands it off to the right. Put them all together, and they form one long chain of hand-offs. We thought it would be fun to let everyone in on the action. Just go to http://mail.google.com/mvideo, where you'll find directions on how to submit your clip (including a PDF of the Gmail M-velope you can use in your video). We'll be accepting clips until August 13th. We'll then take a selection of the submitted clips and edit them together into one final video, which we'll release to the world on August 20th.

What does this have to do with email, you may ask? Well, you can see this as a symbol of how email connects people from all over, making the world feel a bit smaller. Or you could think of it as a metaphor for mail exchange servers, Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), and all of the technical steps involved in getting a Gmail message around the world from one inbox to another. But, really, we just wanted to have a little fun. So give it a shot, and enjoy! Remember, clips are due before August 13th. :-)

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For all you Gmail users hitting those "Report Spam" and "Not Spam" buttons, thanks a ton! We hear from a lot of users that they love how well Gmail blocks spam, and the only reason it works is because you all report it to us. If you're not in the habit of doing this, I hope I can convince you to start. Here are three reasons you should report spam:

Reason #1: It helps you personally. It gets the spam out of your Inbox and keeps what is truly spam separate from any non-spam messages you just want to delete. We keep statistics on which senders you've flagged as spammers (and which you've marked as non-spammers), and we use this information to provide you a better, personalized Gmail spam filter that overrides the system-wide filter when appropriate.

Reason #2: It helps the Gmail community at large (this includes you!). When you report spam, we compute all kinds of interesting things about the spammy message you reported and combine it with the information that other users are reporting about the same message or sender. When our automated system sees a lot of people marking a particular email as spam, it starts blocking similar emails pretty quickly.

Reason #3: It lets us know when we need to do more development. We surround ourselves with monitors displaying the current spam situation on all kinds of nice charts and tickers. When a spammer figures out how to bypass our system, lots of spam reports start flowing in, and we see that pretty much immediately. We react as quickly as we can to these events, developing and testing new code. Usually we can address these in a few hours, but sometimes this can take a few days or weeks to get right. Please don't give up reporting the spam, though. We love and depend on the reminders: they keep us on our toes!

Sometimes people are afraid to report a message because they aren't sure if it is "really" spam or not. Our opinion is that if you didn't ask for it and you don't want it, it's spam to you, and it should be reported. We'll sort it out on our side. We aren't perfect, but in general it works because you tell us when it doesn't!

So if you see a spam message in your inbox, remember to select it and click the "Report Spam" button at the top of the page. And if we put messages in your spam folder that don't belong there, be sure to hit the "Not Spam" button on those too.

Thanks again for your help!


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James Surowiecki opens his book The Wisdom of Crowds with the example of Francis Galton, a famous statistician, who asked individuals to guess the weight of an ox. After collecting all the guesses, he came to a startling conclusion. Most of the people were wrong. However, if you took the median of all guesses, the group was closer to the true weight than even the best cattle experts.

After reading his book, I've become more interested in the power of communities. That's why, when tasked with creating the ultimate Gmail T-shirt design, I decided to turn to the wisdom of the crowds: you, our creative and tech-savvy Gmail users. Starting today you can submit a design that you think embodies the Gmail personality most. Also, you'll be able score designs and let us know the designs that you think have the most potential (think: not ox weight, but T-shirt awesomeness).

We've teamed up with Threadless.com which does this sort of thing all the time. Threadless.com is a site where anyone can submit designs that they'd like to see appear on a T-shirt, people vote, and a small number of winners are printed and sold online. Today, Gmail and Threadless launched a competition created specifically for Gmail with the theme "Connect!" To make it even more interesting, we're giving away an 8GB iPhone, a Jawbone Bluetooth headset, a $400 gift certificate from JetBlue Airlines, some fun Google schwag, and a whole bunch of moolah to the winning designer. So go ahead and pull out your Moleskine notebook, sharpen those No. 2 pencils, and submit away. The contest opens today, and will close at 11:59:59pm CST on August 16th.

Remember that I'll be looking to all of you to help grade the designs. In a way, I trust your judgment more than mine. After all, I once tried to launch Gmail Paper.

Learn more about the contest.

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As a member of the Gmail support team, I get to read testimonials from people about why they love Gmail. Many of you have lamented the fact that your work, school, and other email accounts aren’t more like Gmail. Why can't all my messages magically appear in my Gmail account? Well, we can't do magic, but we do offer free POP-in access with Mail Fetcher.

Mail Fetcher lets you retrieve messages from up to five different email accounts. Besides taking advantage of Gmail’s spam filtering, you can also use Gmail to send messages using your other email addresses. This is convenient for users juggling multiple accounts -- log in once from anywhere and access all of your messages from different email accounts (without missing a single Gmail chat). To enable Mail Fetcher, simply click "Settings," select the "Accounts" tab, click "Add another mail account" and specify your settings.

Just note that the account you're fetching from must have POP3 access. Some providers, including Yahoo! Mail and Hotmail, don’t provide free POP3 access, but many ISP email services do. For more information on Mail Fetcher, you can visit the Gmail Help Center.

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People request new features for Google Calendar all the time. They post to blogs, send email to our support team, call to me on the street, etc. One thing people always ask me about is better mobile access. You can already send a text message to "GOOGL" with a search query, and you'll get a text message reply with the top Google search result. Some folks want a similar service for Google Calendar, where they can send text messages to add events to their calendar or find out what events they have coming up. This is by far my favorite request -- not only because I think it's a great feature, but because it already exists.

Here's how it works: send a text message to "GVENT" (48368) with information about an event, like "3pm cappuccino at Borrone's," and this event will be added to your calendar. Just like the "Quick Add" feature in Google Calendar, GVENT will pop the event into your calendar in the right place. You'll get a text message back confirming the details of your event. Or, send the word "day" to "GVENT" to get a text message response containing all of your scheduled events for today, "next" for your next scheduled event, or "nday" for all your events scheduled for tomorrow. You can learn more about GVENT in the help center.

And now I'm off to get my cappuccino.

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Bill Kee, Associate Product Marketing Manager

When we launched Gmail, we set out to change the way email works. We designed it so you should never have to delete mail and always be able to find the message you want. Since then, we've added things like integrated chat, mobile access, more storage, and better spam protection.

And now there's this blog, where we'll keep you up to date on latest from the Gmail team. We'll post feature updates, productivity tips, and some insights into the people and the technology behind Gmail. And since Gmail works even better with Google Calendar and Docs & Spreadsheets, you'll find posts from folks on these teams as well.

One of the really exciting things about working on Gmail is seeing all of the great ideas that people come up with for integrating Gmail into daily life. Whether it's turning Gmail into your personal nerve center, cool ways to use Google Calendar with Gmail, a lot of its juice comes from you. This blog is a place where we want to highlight interesting and useful posts from elsewhere. And we look forward to sharing some of the fun and crazy things we're up to around the office.

So stay tuned.