Universal Inbox – Hanging by a Thread

Essentially Threadsy is trying to solve the problem that most users face with multiple tabs open in a browser window. If you’re the type who has a Twitter and Facebook account, as well as multiple e-mail accounts, you’ve probably got several tabs running throughout the day that keep these sites open. Threadsy’s solution is to aggregate all the messages from those places into one interface using the newest APIs from Twitter and Facebook, the no-sign-in-needed OAuth from Gmail and other webmail offerings.

Interface

The interface – messages on the left, streaming updates on the right – works for you better than individual inbox views. Web mail has been handled with simplicity. When first setting up the service, you give it access to your various e-mail accounts, which at least for Gmail, can be done without giving Threadsy any of your account credentials. Instead, you just authorize it to get access to those messages – just like enabling connections to your Facebook and Twitter profiles.

Threadsy then blends together all the messages from your Web mail accounts along with direct messages in Twitter and Facebook into one big in-box. When you click on a message, you also get a profile view of the sender, compiling everything your social networks and the web knows about them. Social updates from Twitter and Facebook sit on the right of the page, where you can see the latest items from both networks mixed together. If a user has linked to a photo, Threadsy will give you a nice large preview. The same goes for linked audio files and updates from various Facebook applications.

Pros

  • All your accounts in one place.
  • Social updates and e-mail side by side (even Google Buzz).
  • Built-in Twitter and Facebook posting tool.
  • Signature that includes links to all your various social profiles.
  • Features multi-file attachment uploading.
  • Bird’s eye view of somebody’s public profile, including tweets, uploaded photos, and various social-networking profiles.
  • Built-in chat (powered by Meebo).
  • Audio notifications when you get a new message.

Cons

  • Lackluster auto-complete for the addresses in the e-mail app.
  • Does a poor job showing you the addresses of the e-mail account you’re sending from.
  • “Inbound” universal in-box is hard to tell which services messages are from.
  • Missing the feel of each service’s native messaging tools (except for Twitter).

Don’t let your email marketing campaign get mistaken for spam

Having an aggressive email marketing campaign is one of the most powerful ways to grow your business over the Internet. However, it is easy to accidentally become too aggressive and be flagged for spam. There are a few principles you should keep in mind when you are setting your campaign up so that you can maintain an ethical marketing strategy.

Where is the magic line between a spam email and a legitimate email? Unfortunately, there isn’t one. Marketing email or spam? describes how you can only try to minimize the likelihood that an email will be reflected as spam. Sometimes even the most innocent messages can get flagged by a very conservative recipient. Unfortunately, you can never control how someone is going to respond to your message.

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Spam and how it all started

“We invite you to come see the 2020 and hear about the DECSystem-20 family”, wrote Gary Thuerk of the Digital Equipment Corporation in an effort to let people in the technology field to know about his company. That email written in 1978 marked the beginning of the unsolicited junk emails which is notoriously known in the internet term as SPAM.

After selecting six hundred West Coast addresses, Thuerk realized that he would never have time to call each one of them, or even to send out hundreds of individual messages. Then another idea occurred to him: what if he simply used the network to dispatch a single e-mail to all of them?

The next moment he finished writing the message and hit the “Send” button, he became the father of SPAM.

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Is Gmail the Best Spam Filter for your Domain?

Very recently our domain Oinam went in for Gmail for Domains and we’re currently using their Google Apps for Your Domain. Besides the security and privacy concerns that many user have, Google Apps for Domains is a very viable solution for a small to mid-size company. Currently, Google offers Gmail (for email), GTalk (Instant Messenger), Google Calendar and a simple web page creation tool.

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How to get an email whenever Google visits your site

I was reading the article – Ever wanted to know when google crawls your site via Digg. The article explains how you to send an email via a PHP Script when Google’s spider (GoogleBot) visits your site. So, why not automate that for each and every page that is PHP powered.

To include the script on every page of your site, let us follow the following steps;

1. Modify your .htaccess file (create if you do not have one) to use the auto_prepend_file feature, it should have this line

php_value auto_prepend_file /home/yourdomain.com/www/html/autoappend.php

(a single line full absolute path to the autoappend.php on your server)

2. Create/Modify your autoappend.php (you are free to change the file name accordingly here and in the .htaccess file) to include the PHP script from swik.net (I’ve modified it slightly to have a clickable url when you get the mail);

<?php
//let us notify someone when google crawls this page
if ( strpos( $_SERVER['HTTP_USER_AGENT'], 'Googlebot' ) !== false )
{
    // The email address we want to send the email to
    $email_address = 'mymail@domain.com';
     // Send the email
    mail($email_address,'Googlebot Visit', 'Googlebot has visited your page: http://'.$_SERVER['HTTP_HOST'].$_SERVER['PHP_SELF']);
}
?>

But, my files extension is not PHP even though my server support PHP, how do I use this?

Well, you can use the same .htaccess to enable PHP for any file extension, you have to add this line

AddType application/x-httpd-php .html .htm

This will parse all files with the extension html and htm as PHP scripts.

References

Update

  1. 2006 June 5 (10:00 am) – Be careful to set a filter for your email for this one. Now, I’m bombarded with “Googlebot Visit” mails!
  2. 2006 June 5 (02:00 pm) – This is perhaps a bad idea for a high traffic website. So, far I have received over 500 emails in just about 5 hours. I’m turning mine off.

Spam mails, I would definitely look in

I have just opened an e-mail address, brajeshwar@papernapkin.net for all those e-mailers out there to crawl, extract and mail me with all your needs, sell me goods, offer me free passwords to porn sites, sell me inks for my printer, advertize me those sleek cars, offer me discrete viagra shipping, offer me $3000 a week earning without doing anything but sitting duck at home, offer to give me 30% of the 30 million dollar that you have in your nigeria bank, 25% out of the 50 million dollar that a deceased billionnaire left behind (please take into consideration that I am concerned about other offers which I have left out here).

I promise I will check that mail once every weekend (I will try my best) and click your links, read them, whatever. Also I expect any other language to be translated to English as I can read only that, I can atleast read if you really have an unsubscribe option. Ok, guys go on start the mails. Enjoy spamming.