Okay, I admit it, I’m a complete Goolge fanboy. But wow, they make my life so much easier that it’s hard not to be.
Sure, they have easily the best web search engine on the planet. That’s an easy one. But why stop there? Raelene and I are hooked on Google Mail, mostly because it just works and it just works from anywhere with Internet access. I use Microsoft Exchange/Outlook at work, which I can access through the web. But if I want access to all the features Outlook provides, I’m tied to checking email from a computer that’s been fully configured with my account. That’s even more of a pain than it sounds like, and certainly a high price to pay to use email. Google Mail gives me all of the features I get from the full version of Outlook, and is much easier to use.
Raelene and I are also hooked on Google Calendar. In the old days, Raelene was the keeper of “the calendar”, and we’d have to consult it together whenever either one of us wanted to make plans. Now, either of us can consult or edit our calendar from just about anywhere. Heck, we can both view and edit it at the same time, from different rooms or different cities. That’s cool.
Similarly, we’re using Google Docs for all documents that we need to share (like checklists, to-do lists, and anything else we want to collaborate on). We can both work on the documents as we have time, and from any computer, without worrying about trying to sync up different versions later.
Raelene and I get all of our driving directions from Google Maps. I get my news as RSS feeds in Google Reader, and enjoy checking out the Google Hot Trends. I’m taking advantage of the Google webmaster tools and Google Analytics to monitor and optimize this and a handful of other websites. I have an iGoogle homepage that serves as a “dashboard” for a bunch of stuff I’m interested in monitoring during the day. I am using Google Chrome (the Google web browser) right now to post this.
I haven’t gotten into Google Desktop yet, mostly because it doesn’t support multiple clocks showing multiple timezones in a nice way. I am looking forward to when Google releases their “tasks” or “to-do list” application, so that Raelene and I can collaborate on our to-do lists to make sure things that nothing gets forgotten.
So yea, what did I do before Google? Maybe I should google it and find out…