Google Presentation Add Notes and Embedded Video

Google Blog

Google Presentation adds "speaker note" to it's product. As one of my presentation class instructors emphasize you shouldn't have any slide that doesn't ADD VALUE to your presentation. Basically, he means you shouldn't have everything you want to say on the slide because that just duplicates what you want to say and distracts your audiences from you, the speaker.

It also let you embed video in the presentation. So far, it only works for YouTube video, but I think other online video site embedding should be coming up. It's cool that you could expand the video by clicking the icon on the icon in the lower-right corner.

How to Search in Gmail?

Gmail is a free web-base email provided by Google. And all of you should know Google is really good at search. It should be an easy guess that you could search your email in gmail really fast. Actually, "Search your mail instantly" is the second of the "10 reasons to use Gmail" given by Google. The search is very easy to use especially to those familiar with computer and IT stuff. For those didn't know how to use. Here is a starter to help you.
  1. To perform search, you could type in your search query/phase into the Gmail search box (on the top of your Gmail account) and hit "Enter" or click "Search Mail" button. Your search phase could be anything you remember about the email.

  2. If you remember some specific details, eg sender, recipient and subject, about the email. You could narrow your search for each item. For example, I used [from:john] operator in the search box above . It will search all mails sent out by John.

  3. If John sent me an email about L.A. Lakers won their second game against Denver Nuggets. I could search it like this [from:john lakers]

  4. What if I have 2 friends name John - John Travolta and John Doe. You could use quotation mark to group the first and last name like [from:"john Travolta"].

  5. Another example: An email sent to John Doe with I'm a dummy as the subject line. It could be search by this query [to:"John Doe" subject:"I'm a dummy"]

  6. There are more operators that you could use - cc:, bcc:, has:attachment, filename:, label:, in: and is:. You could also limit the search to a certain time period by using after: and before: operators. For more information, this page will help.

  7. If you are too lazy to learn and remember all those operators name, you could use the advance search by clicking on "Show search options".

    A little tip: After you make the search using the "Search Options," it will show a query above the result that you could reuse it later in the "normal" Gmail search box. In this case, it would be [from:("john Travolta") lakers -Spurs after:2008/3/23 before:2008/3/30]

    A little tip #2: After each search in Gmail, your browser's address bar would be updated and you could use that location to preform the same search later on (even on other gmail account). The search above would produce this URL:
    If you click on the link, it will perform the above search in your Gmail account. (Given you have signed in to your Gmail)
At this point I think you should understand the general idea of Gmail search and start searching.

Fixing Win XP File Extension Error

Today I was using GNU Cash (Microsoft Money/Quicken open source alternative) to import some QFX files. Somehow the program stalled and I needed to fire up Windows Task Manager to kill it. After that, of course, I would like to restart GNU Cash program, but it didn't run.

What I got is this message: "This file does not have a program associated with it for performing this action. Create an association in the folders options control panel." After looking at the GNU Cash folder and find out it executes a .bat file. And the problem is Windows doesn't recognize .bat is an executable file. After googling it, I found out that the WinXP registry was corrupted. And this web page: has all those little reg files that fixed my file association errors. (I have error when running .bat, .com, .reg file types)

WARNING: Registry is a really critical part of Windows. If you messed it up, your machine may not be usable again. Using the above fix at your own risk.

Google Earth 4.3

Google released a new version of Google Earth (version 4.3) yesterday. I'm amused by how much improvements and new features they introduce in this version. Before I talk about the features, here is the link you could download the software:
  1. It improved the control.
    On the upper right corner, there are 3 controls (Look, move and zoom) instead of 2 in the previous version (Move and zoom).
  2. It improved the loading time of the 3D buildings. Also, when you click on the building, it will show you more information about it.
  3. If you used Google Maps before, you must know what "Street View" is. They are in Google Earth now. Moreover, it works a lot smoother in Google Earth than Google Maps.
  4. It introduced the "Sunlight" mode that it shows where the Sun is at a given time (Look at the slider on the top). And it will create the corresponding shadow on the 3D buildings and mountains. If you zoom all the way out and see the whole globe plus the "weather layer" on the left, you will have a great picture.
    Before After

You could see features "in action" in the following two videos:
  1. A demo of new features from Google Earth Blog (it's'not an official Google blog):

  2. 2. A tour from Google Earth site:

Other Blogs about Google Earth 4.3:

Save Google presentation to Microsoft powerpoint format

Google has a new feature in Google Docs - presentation that you could save it to Microsoft powerpoint format (PPT). I didn't use Google presentation at all. However, it's a nice new feature that could help people to try out the service. As you can see in the image above, you could also save presentation as PDF or raw text file.