Gmail Will Allow Users To Turn off Conversation View

From the “I Didn’t Realize This Was A Problem” department: Gmail will soon allow users to turn off conversation view.

Apparently, some people hate the conversation view. Are you one of them? I actually like it. I used it in Outlook too. Sometimes it’s easier to follow an email train in conversation view.

Who Hacked My Facebook Account?


Somebody has apparently hacked into my Facebook account and sent nasty messages to my wife as me. I’m trying to imagine who has the skill to pull this off, plus the time to bother to do it. I’m also wondering who could consider me important enough to mess with like this.

If you happen to know who has done this, please let me know. If a similar thing has happened to you, let me know how you dealt with it. It happened last year, which caused me to change my password. My password has apparently already been hacked again.


Upon further investigation, these messages aren’t coming from my account.

Google Is On A Roll This Week

Lots of good things came out of Google recently. OK, 2 things. One is interesting, and the other should be highly useful.

One of the reasons I stick with gmail is for the storage space and the world-class spam filter. I rarely have a problem with spam thanks to gmail. I also like that I can get my mail just about anywhere: on the web, in Outlook, on my iPhone, or on just about any other device I might have. The convenience is great.

The interesting thing Google rolled out is the ability to make calls from gmail. I say it’s interesting because I’m not sure I’ll use it much. I can’t get Christina to test it with me. I called my iPhone from gmail and had the boys take it into another room, but they started fighting over who was going to hold the phone and ruined the experiment.

The next thing Google rolled out is called Priority Inbox. This is based on gmail’s spam filter and addresses a very real problem: email overload.

Gmail already has a heavy filtering system built in. You can create folders (or labels) and then filters based on those labels. I probably have 200 filters already, and it seems like I’m creating several more each week. I hate when I’m out, and expecting an email. Every time my iPhone tells me I have a new email, I rip it out of my pocket, enter the passcode, go to email, and find the whole experience anti-climactic. Rather than the important email I’m waiting for, it’s only  the 14th special offer GoDaddy has sent me this afternoon. Like I buy that many websites from them. Or it’s the AFA whining about another secular news organ being biased against Christian interests. Or it’s an automated reminder telling me my cable or cell phone bill is due in 3 weeks. Nothing important, and definitely not the email I was waiting for.

It seems that no matter how aggressively I filter my email, I still have to deal with tons of non-important “bac’n” in my inbox taking up time. I prefer to filter those into other folders then deal with them when I feel like it.

Because I handle email similar to the principles taught in “Getting Things Done”, I don’t mark an email as read or delete it (gmail archive) unless all actions required by that email have been completed. So while I’m out for a while, I can build up a ton of email in my inbox until I get home and can set up new filters so those kinds of emails will skip my inbox in the future.

I’m looking forward to the Priority Inbox. It would be nice to spend less time setting up filters in gmail.

The Key Word in Social Media is Social

Social media is a double edged sword. Through social media, I’ve reconnected with high school friends and Navy buddies I thought I’d never see again. I’ve even kept in touch with family, and formed closer relationships even with those in driving distance. I’ve been able to get a glimpse into the minds of business leaders I respect and admire. I’ve been able to see what celebrities I like are doing, like the Ghost Hunters and the Deadliest Catch fishermen.

Social media provides a business advantage. I can promote my listings a lot easier through social media. I can broadcast a lot farther and a lot faster about open houses and new listings. It’s a great business tool.

But I can also be spammed relentlessly by others promoting their own businesses and interests, who have no filter between their mind and keyboard. I routinely get friend requests from people, only to have my status stream and messages filled up with “business opportunities”, webinars, demands for information, and other distractions. All this from people who totally ignore the social aspect of social media.

Just now, I cleaned out 8 messages from my Facebook inbox. All were from people who “friended” me only for business promotion purposes. One guy sent two messages about a video of a friend who is supposedly making $1000 a day.Great. Believable. Somebody else sent out 3 messages about how he’s looking for short sales. That’s just the Real Estate and “Internet Marketers”.

I’m all for using social media for business. But I think you need to form a relationship. The founder of the company I’m affiliated with says “people buy people before they buy (anything else)”. So if you’re expecting me to buy your product through Facebook, then who are you? What are you thinking about? What are you doing? What do you like to do? What books are you reading?

I don’t turn down friend requests unless they’re obvious spam, but I tend to ignore those people who do nothing but shamelessly market.

What about you? Do you run into shameless promoters on social media? Do you think it’s OK?

Finally, Social Media Expert Defined

From Jason Dunn. I’d say this video sums it up nicely.

I need to find out what program is being used to create these things. 

Why Do People Waste So Much Energy Worrying Their (fill in the blank) Makes Them Dumber?

I'm starting to think there is something wrong with me. Am I missing something?

I don't spend any time worrying that my (iPhone, Dell, netbook, nook, TV, DVR, refrigerator, washing machine, GPS, reading lamp, stand-up shower, power mirrors, RSS Reader, or whatever the heck else) is making me dumb.

None. I don't waste any energy worrying about it.

Yet I read tons of content from other people worrying that such and such is killing their brains. Consider this from The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW): Is My iPhone Making Me Dumber?

I don't get it. But I see these things as very useful tools. I enjoy them while I have them. If they all disappeared some day, I'd find a way to get by. I'd really miss my broadband Internet and air conditioning though.

Do you worry about these things making you dumb? Destroying your ability to think? Why? Do you have any objective evidence for this, or are you just following "conventional wisdom"?

The Last Barrier To Me Using Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer has come a long was over the years. Version 6 was one of the most insecure and painful web browsers I’ve ever used. I still can’t believe some organizations (like the United States Navy) still use it exclusively. As in, they actually design websites that will not work in any other browser but Internet Explorer 6. This is despite the fact that Microsoft has released 2 newer versions of the browser, both of which work a lot better.

I’ve been using IE8 a little more lately. I actually like it. It starts VERY slow. It’s one of the slower browsers to start. But once it’s running, it runs pretty well. It finally has a session manager, so if I have a lot of tabs open and have to restart my computer, I can pick up where I left off. I don’t have to set a lot of bookmarks.

But there is one thing that is stopping me from using Internet Explorer more than Google’s Chrome or Mozilla’s Firefox: this stupid dialog. I wrote that blog post more than 3 years ago, and that prompt is still a part of Internet Explorer.

If Microsoft could either get rid of that prompt, or at least let me click “Don’t ever bother me with this again”, I would probably make the jump to using IE8 a lot more often.

Are you using IE8 more than another browser?

How I Decide Who To Follow Back on Twitter

I've been on Twitter for a couple of years now. I've been active for at least 2 years. I have over 200 followers now. I have no idea how many people have unfollowed me. I've unfollowed quite a few.

When it comes to social media, I tend to want to emphasize the social part. I want to know what people are thinking about and what they're doing. I want to interact with them. I'm especially interested if I'm following somebody successful that I want to be like someday. Make sure it's actually the person you're following though. Thanks to the rise of ghost blogging, some people don't even write their own tweets anymore. They pay someone to do it. Robert Kiyosaki is a case in point. He uses a “ghost” to tweet for him. So do John Maxwell and Dave Ramsey, although they are open about it and will occasionally write their own tweets. No matter how successful I get, any tweets you see with my name on them will come from me.

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Interesting Social Media Statistics

I’m curious to know what this means. I pick up followers on Twitter and Facebook that I don’t know. That’s not unusual; I routinely find people through social media that I don’t know. I’m interested in what they have to say and in what they’re doing. I follow them.

The types of people most likely to follow me on Twitter that I don’t know are pastors and Internet marketers.

The types of people most likely to follow me on Facebook that I don’t already know are Real Estate investors.

What about you? What kinds of people, besides friends and family, follow you on the social media sites?

How To Use A Daily Capture Mind Map

Way back in September, I wrote a post about using a concept called a Daily Capture Mind Map. It was to address a serious vulnerability in my own productivity system.

For the most part, it worked really well. I began using Mind Manger for iPhone. I kept this map on it. I treated this as a dashboard and used it to park information that I needed access to quickly. Prior to buying Mind Manager for iPhone, I was using Mind Meister, an online mind mapping service with a free plan. At the time I had two computers for work on two different networks, so I could access my dashboard at either, plus at home.

iPhone Pictures 195

With Mind Manager for iPhone, if I was out and about, and came up with a new idea, or an action item, I would park it on this mind map until I could get to it later. If somebody committed to get something to me, it went on here. And, if I committed something to somebody else, it went on here. I referred to it several times a day.

It worked really well for a while. At least, it worked until I didn’t have a job anymore. For some reason, I’m a lot better at tracking lots of information than I am very little information. Once I was removed from my position in November, I didn’t have anything else to track. I haven’t really used this map much since then.

I’m going to dust this map back off as I go about my job search.