I never really used Gmail until earlier this summer when I got an Android phone which is heavily integrated with Google’s various offerings. So I went from a complete Gmail newbie to essentially dumping most of my life into it — for me Gmail acts as my own private knowledge base searchable from anywhere I can get a signal with my phone.
Gina Trapani’s Better Gmail 2 add-on for Firefox is indispensable in using Gmail. It bundles together some of the best Greasemonkey scripts for Gmail. Personally, I couldn’t live without the Folders4Gmail script that lets users build hierarchical label structures in Gmail.
Yes, you could go out and download all of these scripts and install them, but it is very nice that Trapani has rolled them all together in one easily updated add-on.
TinyURL Decoder is a Greasemonkey script that will decode links from TinyURL, etc., and show where the link ultimately goes before you click on it.
I don’t know about the rest of you, but I have a real love/hate relationship with Gmail. For the most part I love it, but Google seems to have Steve Jobs Disease in thinking that for key features there is only One True Way to implement a feature. If you don’t happen to like that way, Google’s support is happy to post friendly “you don’t know what you’re talking about” responses (see, for example, their responses to the completely screwed up way Gmail will associate completely unrelated e-mails into the same Conversation).
Fortunately, there are scripts and add-ons to deal with most of the defects, such as the Folders4Gmail Greasemonkey script which lets the user organize labels into a hierarchical structure. Google says nobody needs this, but I beg to differ. This is extremely helpful. For example, each of my web sites sends out numerous administrative e-mails which I assign labels to. It’s extremely helpful to have a Web Sites –> websiteX hiearchy, so it’s easy to quickly drill down to these particular set of e-mails without cluttering up the labels list.
Remove All Facebook Ads is a Grease Monkey script that does what its name suggests — removes all Facebook ads, including those that AdBlock, etc. don’t.
This is a neat little Greasmonkey script that will pull in tooltips from Wowhead for any WoW item linked to on any web page.
Category Resizer is a Greasemonkey script that actually makes the WordPress Categories list usable when writing a post. Rather than the single column list hidden behind scroll bars, Category Resizer lists all categories in a multi-column list under the post. Very nice when you have a lot of categories.