Tuesday, 13 March 2007

Google Apps cntd.

I have been progressing with lots of odds and ends this week and last which has meant no blogging, you can't force it after all. Unfortunately this means my traffic has nosedived so its a good job I am not dependant upon the income from my blog like Rob is ;o) (see previous post)

Which illustrates a point I wanted to make - should anyone read this and think 'Hey that looks like a cool thing to do that blogging lark' the only advice I would give is to get a Google analytics account because otherwise is pretty dull. As you can see I have visitors from all over the world when I can actually work up a little blog fodder but otherwise I have had no feedback at all, so praise Google for keeping beerbytes online!

So I am sure you have all been waiting with baited breath for an update on the Google calendar situation, well we have had some movement - spanning sync is out of beta and ready for deployment. Hooray! I really must congratulate spanning sync for producing just about the only calendar syncing software which works, I have been running it now for about 4 weeks and whilst syncmycal was merrily trashingmycal, spanningsync has just worked which is all we ask.

Another piece of software which also seems to be working is a little system called goosync which is syncing my Google calendar over-the-air with my HTC Pocket PC. This means now that the Mac side of things is perfect, Ical Syncs my calendar both ways with Google, my PDA does likewise and Ical also displays the rest of the offices calendars via .ics addresses.

This last point brings me onto a bit of a gripe with Google Apps. On paper Google apps is great but I have steadily been whittling away at the features which are actually useful to an organisation like ours. 2 weeks ago I closed the premier account because it was not bringing anything to the table over and above a standard Google apps for domains account and this afternoon I have had to walk away from even this because the calendaring system on these accounts does not allow private Ical feeds! Big mistake - I have had to spend some time this afternoon manually setting up standard Google accounts because syncmycal on the PC is not very happy with the Google apps calendaring feeds which seem to be slightly different from standard Google feeds and Outlook 2007 cannot plug into the Ical feeds on Google Apps.

So I am short of only 2 things now, Goosync is struggling to work on our Nokia 6233's but I am sure we can sort this and I need to get Outlook publishing to Google which syncmycal can allegedly do as long as your not on Apps.

Other news, Joost is still very cool but the content has been suspiciously stagnant since I first went on possibly indicating an Achilles heel, is it difficult to get the established networks to part with their premium content? And/or is it difficult to circulate new content around the Joost network? Maybe they need to take at look at the youtube way of doing things and get the public to contribute, I am not talking about the 240x180 endless rips of Simpson's funnies but seriously good quality video from Jo public. something along the line of a bit torrent network where people can submit content recorded on proper video cameras to make good quality but amateur videos which will play full screen. These could be vetted and categorised by Joost thereby avoiding the lawyers making a fat buck or two and allowing a huge variety of content to be available.

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A view from the rack is the personal blog of an IT manager who works for a pub company - hence beer