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In defense of white space (and choices)

Gmail's new design offers plenty of white space... and a good example

Big white square

Gmail has had a very interesting redesign. (I love the big fat red "Compose" button. Doesn't work on me, though; I press it, and I'm just as anxious as ever.) You can read about some of the details on the Gmail blog, including an account of the choices they made around designing the left sidebar.

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Want to populate a blog widget from Google Reader? You still can. (Updated: Or maybe not.)

Use tags to replace the RSS feed from Google Reader's "Share" button

Google Reader evolution - Nov. 2011

Updated: Yes, you get a news feed from this tip... but it's only available if you authenticate as the user who created it. I'm digging around to see if there's a solution.

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Three handy tools for engaging on Google+

If you've had the same experience of Google+ that I have, then you're probably loving the more expansive conversational room, the in-context shared content, the simplicity of Circles, the immediacy of Hangouts.

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Google Circles is great. But I'm waiting for Google Venn Diagrams.

If you’ve managed to sprint inside of Google+ during one of those brief periods when the front door has been left ajar, then the first thing you’ve seen has been Google Circles. It allows you to organize your contacts into lists, based on how you know them, how much you trust them, whether you consider them cool, how you want to communicate with them… whatever criteria you want.

It’s a great feature, done in an appealing way. But it only goes so far.

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Noise to Signal looks back

Social media in 2010: a cartoon year in review

The year that started with Angry Birds and wrapped up with Angry Delicious Users is finally over.

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What keeps Chris up at night

Northern Voice: Chris Messina on the open web - and what threatens to close it up

Chris Messina, Google's new open web advocate, just wrapped Northern Voice's second keynote with a call for the defence of the open web from the gatekeeper mentality. (Which is why I just hit "publish" on my last blog post - it covers some of the same terrain, and I'd like to contribute to that conversation.)

I'm liking this no-PowerPoint thing a lot. Here are my notes from Chris's speech:

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Hooking up and Settling down

Finding and Keeping Love Online: A video Valentine

Social Signal's 2010 Valentine is a celebration of how the Internet can help you find love and keep it alive.

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Google Apps + Manymoon = productivity and customer satisfaction

Google profiles Social Signal's project management process

Social Signal regulars will know that we've (and by "we", I especially mean "Alex") put a lot of effort into finding the perfect solution to our project management needs. We've tried web apps like Basecamp and Remember the Milk, desktop apps like Daylite... but nothing has met all of our needs.

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Google Reader: the first social newsreader?

Google Reader logo

Think of a social network, and you probably think of something like Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace or Bebo. (If you're especially old-school, or Brazilian, you might think of Orkut.)

Either way, you're thinking of a capital-S, capital-N Social Network. You join it as a social network, probably with the initial intention of connecting with people.

But some social networks can kind of sneak up on you. You think you're there to do something purely solitary, but then something happens...

Also, they say you should be flossing more

Also, they say you should be flossing more(one woman holding a telephone speaks to another woman, who is looking under a chair) It's Google. They say you left your keys in the left-hand pocket of your other pants.

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Work Smarter with Evernote

Get more out of Evernote with Alexandra Samuel's great new ebook, the first in the Harvard Business Press Work Smarter with Social Media series!

Available on Amazon, iTunes and HBR.