Vacation responders, snoozing, even rudimentary forms of read receipts? Oh, how far email clients have come to meet up with our instant message services. But if there's anything our chat apps can learn from its progenitor, it's scheduled replies — and Telegram has picked up that trick as well as a few others in its latest update. Read More
It's Friday evening, you're working a bit after closing time and you've got to send out one last email to a contact at another company. There's no chance anybody is still at the office, nor will anybody be in before Monday. You can live with waiting that long, but you know that sending the email right now means it will surely get buried behind everything else that comes in over the weekend, and if the backlog is too long, your message may not even be read until later in the week. The obvious answer is that you should just schedule your email to be sent early Monday morning... Read More
A seemingly minor update to Google Calendar began rolling out earlier today, bumping the version number from 5.5.7 to 5.5.9. There aren't any apparent changes to the interface with this release, but it does come with some interesting things under the covers. A teardown reveals a new feature for the office that will allow people to schedule conference rooms, the return of reminders that can be snoozed, and possibly a "new api" for developers to work with. Read More
Calendar apps are a dime a dozen on the Play Store, but few of them have the polish, power, and intuitive interface of Today Calendar. Now the app can add one more bullet point to its list of handy options that make it easier and faster to schedule appointments and tasks: natural language processing.
What that means is that you no longer have to fuss with manually picking dates, times, and durations. You simply type them as you're making a new entry and Today will interpret the specific details and schedule accordingly. Words like today, tomorrow, Friday, in 3 days, specific dates, holiday names, and times like 2pm, for 3 hours, from 1pm until 5pm, are processed by the app without the need to go into date and time selection. Read More
Ah, work scheduling. I recall with fondness long hours spent in the Texas A&M Commons building trying to schedule two weeks of 24-hour emergency desk service around the personal and scholastic lives of a dozen sophomores. No wait, not fondness, that's not right. What's the word I'm looking for? Ah, that's it: abject loathing. Maybe if we had something like Doodle, I wouldn't have spent four hours playing Time Slot Monopoly every other Wednesday.
Doodle is a web service that lets teams instantly see and assign who's doing what, when. It's intended for retail and support jobs that always need one or more people on during specific hours, but you can adapt it to almost any situation where work or attendance needs to be shared over time. Read More
Battery life on Android has been a bit of a sore spot for many users, mostly because it's simply not good enough. Most devices can make it a day on moderate use, and a few can even do so comfortably, very few phones can hit two days without some time on the charger. The Android "L" release is making several improvements to power efficiency via Project Volta, but there are also ways to improve 3rd-party apps, and that's where the new Job Scheduler comes in.
In the past, if a developer wants to run a background task to pull data from a server or run some processor-intensive work, the app has to listen for certain events or set an alarm to wake up at regular intervals. Read More