Google recently renamed their Google Apps for Work service as 'G Suite,' which I still think sounds silly. However, the features Google announced today for all G Suite users are anything but.
Possibly the most important new feature is Action Items, which are Docs files assigned to a person or group of people. You can assign documents to others, which then appear on the recipient's main Drive screen with a special badge. Additionally, when you create a comment on the desktop site along the lines of "Phil to enter numbers for this week," Docs can figure out who you are talking about and assign it to them automatically. Read More
Google Drive has recently added an enhanced search and regular expressions support, but those features have not yet made their way to the mobile apps. Now the Android application exclusively has a new feature, simply called Quick Access. This uses machine learning to predict what documents you are most likely to open, based on your Drive activity and recurring patterns. Google claims this "saves 50 percent off the average time it takes to get to the right file by eliminating the need to search for it." Read More
Regular expressions are common in the programming world as a way of finding (and filtering) text based on patterns. regexes can range from extremely simple, such as the example above for finding whitespaces, to longer expressions for more general inputs. If you are one of the wizards who can actually comprehend phrases like Read More
(?<=^|(?<=[^a-zA-Z0-9-_\.]))@([A-Za-z]+[A-Za-z0-9]+) (a regex for identifying Twitter usernames), then Google Docs' latest feature is just for you.
Finding that one important file hidden in a sea of unrelated documents is never fun. Thankfully, Google is seeking to help solve that problem - at least for Google Drive users. Starting today, the Google Drive search bar on the web app can use Natural Language Processing (NLP) to help you find documents. For example, searching "show me presentations from last year" brings up all your documents modified in last year with a presentation file type.
Google claims that this feature will only become more accurate as time goes on, so don't get your hopes up for perfect results quite yet. For example, I have a collection of old operating systems on ISO files, and when I search "iso files," a single JPEG file appears. Read More
Tables and charts are some of the most commonly used elements in Google's Drive suite of apps, but they can be a little clunky on mobile. Today, Google has updated Docs, Slides, and Sheets on Android to make these organizational tools easier to use than ever before. Read More
While Google has been pushing out a ton of OS and app updates, the Drive team got out one of its own. This is a perfectly good update on its own, but it also includes clues to some upcoming features, too. In this update, you'll find a newly revised look and operation for uploading files, and there's even a color picker for folders. (Yey!) On the teardown side, we can look forward to recommendations for files, a shortcut to "Team Drives," and possibly even another form of device backup. Oh yeah, and the FAB changes color. Read More
Inbox is all about convenience and efficiency. Every couple of updates bring some kind of feature that provides contextually relevant information or automates some action so it becomes fairly painless. The latest Inbox update to v1.18 contains some details that betray yet another one of these shortcuts: a direct method for modifying the sharing options of a file in Google Drive. Read More
Google Drive keeps getting small incremental improvements on the Web and on mobile platforms to enhance the experience for anyone who uses it regularly or semi-regularly to create, edit, and share files. The team has just announced two such small changes that, for now, are coming to Google Drive on the Web.
First, search is getting easier and cross app. Whether you're in Docs, Sheets, or Slides, typing a new search term will not only look for a document of the corresponding type, but across all of your Drive. This will make the experience more consistent if you're editing a couple of related documents and presentations for example and don't what to manually hop over from Docs to Slides to work on the file. Read More
There's a new version of Drive rolling out today, and it focuses on improving the experience around file sharing in several ways. Notifications for shared files and folders are getting better in a few ways, getting access to files is easier, and you can preview files in Drive even if you haven't logged in. It's not all live right away, but you can install the updated app right now. Read More