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Most of us are using Google and its services everyday. Their search engine, Gmail and Youtube are some the most popular Google products. But how many of you knew that Google has, for example, a tool for creating charts? And if you knew, were you actually using it?
Google has dozens of undiscovered, yet excellent products, people don’t know about. In Google Labs itself you can find plenty of useful tools and products for web designers and developers. Furthermore all Google services are free to use and that makes them appealing alternatives to paid products of a similar nature. For example, Google Docs can be a great alternative for Microsoft Office since it’s free, light and easy to use. This article presents 30 useful, practical and smashing products, tools and services from Google that you should consider using daily.
Google News is a computer-generated news site that aggregates headlines from news sources worldwide, groups similar stories together and displays them according to each reader’s personalized interests. The articles are selected and ranked by computers that evaluate, among other things, how often and on what sites a story appears online.
Google Reader constantly checks your favorite news sites and blogs for new content. Whether a site updates daily or monthly, you can be sure that you won’t miss a thing. With your Google Reader public page, you can share your favorite items with your friends, simply by sending them to relevant links.
With Google Bookmarks, you can save shortcuts to your favorite webpages and navigate to them in seconds. Unlike browser bookmarks that are stored on a single computer, Google bookmarks are stored in your Google Account. This means you can access them from any computer with an internet connection.
Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your choice of query or topic. Enter the topic you wish to monitor, then click preview to see the type of results you’ll receive.
Google Sites is a free and easy way to create and share web pages. With Google Sites you can easily create rich web pages, collect all your info in one place and control who can view and edit it. You don’t need any knowledge of HTML and it’s free to use.
Blog Search is Google search technology focused on blogs. Blog Search helps users to explore the blogging universe more effectively, and perhaps inspire many to join the revolution themselves. Whether you’re looking for Harry Potter reviews, political commentary, summer salad recipes or anything else, Blog Search enables you to find out what people are saying on any subject of your choice.
With Google Trends, you can compare the world’s interest in your favorite topics. Enter up to five topics and see how often they’ve been searched on Google over time. Google Trends also shows how frequently your topics have appeared in Google News stories, and in which geographic regions people have searched for them most.
Gmail Labs is a testing ground for experimental features that aren’t quite ready for primetime. While you may find some awesome stuff there, you have to keep in mind that these features can break at any time or disappear altogether. However they may work so well that they graduate and become regular features.
PubSubHubbub is a simple, open, server-to-server publish/subscribe protocol as an extension to Atom and RSS. Parties speaking the PubSubHubbub protocol can get near-instant notifications via WebHook callbacks when a feed they are interested in is updated.
Google Contacts is a place to import, store and view all of the contact information that’s important to you. You can also create your own groups of contacts to easily email many people at once.
Knol is a Google project that aims to include user-written articles on a range of topics. Knol allows you to communicate, collaborate and share your knowledge with the world.
Google Moderator is a tool that allows distributed communities to submit and vote on questions for talks, presentations and events. Suggested questions as well as user votes are seen in real-time.
With Google Tasks you can add new tasks, set due dates or add notes, and (most satisfyingly) check them off as you’re done. Your task list stays up to date no matter how you access it. It’s a simple list that’s with you everywhere you go. You can access Google Tasks from your Google Mobile, Gmail, Calendar or iGoogle.
With Google Docs you can create and share your work online and access your documents from anywhere. Manage documents, spreadsheets, presentations, surveys, and more all in one easy to use productivity suite. What’s handy you can embed your created forms and use them in websites.
Google Checkout allows buyers in over 140 countries to purchase goods and services using a credit or debit card through our fast, secure checkout process. Google Checkout also helps you increase sales with the Google Checkout badge that can be displayed on your AdWords ads and Product Search listings.
Google Fusion Tables is a modern data management and publishing web application that makes it easy to host, manage, collaborate on, visualize, and publish data tables online. There’s also a gadget that that helps you create animated flash charts & graphs for your web pages, blogs & Google Pages.
Google’s DoubleClick products provide ad management and ad serving solutions to companies that buy, create or sell online advertising. The world’s top marketers, publishers, ad networks and agencies use DoubleClick products as the foundation for their online advertising businesses. With deep expertise in ad serving, media planning, search management, rich media, video and mobile, our DoubleClick products help customers execute their digital media strategy more effectively.
With Google Art Project you can explore museums from around the world, discover and view hundreds of artworks at incredible zoom levels, and even create and share your own collection of masterpieces.
Google Shopper helps you find information on millions of products. Google Shopper recognizes products by cover art, barcode, voice and text search. You can find local and online prices, reviews, specifications, videos, and more to help you make the best purchasing decision. With one click you can save items to your shopping list and share with your friends.
Voice Actions for Android lets you control your phone using your voice. Call contacts and businesses, send messages, browse the web, and complete common tasks. You can do pretty much anything with it – send simple text messages or get directions.
Google Code Search helps you find function definitions and sample code by giving you one place to search publicly accessible source code hosted on the Internet. With Google Code Search, you can use regular expressions to search more precisely, restrict your search by language, license or filename and view the source file with links back to the entire package and the webpage where it came from.
In Google Code Labs, you’ll find developer products that are experimental. Some of these will one day graduate out of labs, others may remain experimental or even be shut down. That’s what a lab is for. Likewise, graduating from Google Code Labs is a big step that indicates our long-term commitment to that product.
Google Webmaster Tools provides a free and easy way to make your website more Google friendly. With webmaster Tools you can see how Google crawls, indexes and ranks your website, see how many people found your site in search results, and how many people clicked on it and much more.
Google Browser Size is a visualization of browser window sizes for people who visit Google. For example, the “90%” contour means that 90% of people visiting Google have their browser window open to at least this size or larger.
Page Speed Online analyzes the content of a web page, then generates suggestions to make that page faster. Reducing page load times can reduce bounce rates and increase conversion rates.
reCAPTCHA is a free CAPTCHA service that protects your site against spam, malicious registrations and other forms of attacks where computers try to disguise themselves as a human; a CAPTCHA is a Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Human Apart. reCAPTCHA comes in the form of a widget that you can easily add to your blog, forum, registration form, etc
Google Web Elements allow you to easily add your favorite Google products to your website. It’s a great alternative if you don’t want to create your own search engine, for instance.
Installable web apps are a way of making Google Chrome treat certain websites like apps. People can find installable web apps using the Chrome Web Store. Many installable web apps are hosted apps—normal websites with a bit of extra metadata. You can build and deploy hosted apps exactly as you would build and deploy any web app, using any server-side or client-side technologies you like.
Google Dashboard is an online tool that allows Google Account holders to view all their personal information Google is storing on their servers. It’s pretty handy to manage all your Google service accounts at one place and keep them up to date.
There are actually many more products, especially for you designers and developers. Like I mentioned before, Google has a great number of lesser known, yet powerful, development and coding tools. Listing them all would be useless, however there’s no reason why you shouldn’t check them out yourself. Here are some websites where you can learn about Google products and their features.
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