back to article Google slots nested labels, sneak peek experiments into Gmail

Mountain View has plonked two more experimental features into its Google Labs for Gmail. “Nested labels” is the company’s latest attempt to improve its email labelling system, while “message sneak peek” brings up a preview pane for Gmailers to more quickly see their emails. As is standard with Google Labs features, users will …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Folders are stupid though...

    ...why waste your life shuffling things around to different folders when a simple search brings up any email I'm looking for. I don't even bother with labels.

  2. Wommit

    Nested Labels

    Doesn't everyone else just call them TAGS?

    1. Craigness

      Not Tags

      Check the official blog entry, linked in the article. Everyone else calls them folders.

  3. Chris Hills

    Stupid labels

    Give me folders any day. Unless you configure it otherwise, when download mail via imap, you get a new copy of the same message for every label applied to it, as well as a copy from the "All Mail" folder (and "Inbox" until the mail is archived).

    1. onerob

      IMAP folders - labs to the rescue

      There's a great feature in labs to let you deselect labels that you don't wish to appear as folders in an IMAP email client. I used it to deselect 'All Mail' so that searching for emails inside Apple Mail doesn't bring up duplicates all the time.

  4. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

    I don't like prescriptions..

    WTF? Can't Google just provide both labels and folders and leave it to their users to decide what they prefer? Who dictated this return to the 60s where IT told users what to use?

    If people want folders because that's how they work, what's so hard to provide that UI?

    It is 100% irrelevant if it is "better" or not (and I personally think that conclusion merits some evidence) - it depends on the user IMHO.

    At least it's not a problem for me - I don't use Gmail :-)

    1. PaulH

      Labels expand on the function of folders.

      > Can't Google just provide both labels and folders and leave it to their users to decide what they prefer?

      Effectively, they do. There's a handy "Move-to" menu, which actually just applies a label while removing all others. That has the same effect as placing a mail in a folder.

      Does this new hierarchy system only apply to the tree-display of labels, or would a "ToDo" label, for example, under "Work" be different from one under "Home"?

      I haven't tested it, but I suspect it is just the former (i.e. just a way to display the labels differently).

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    keeps things neat

    folders are sort of convenient thought aren't they? anyway, why can't we just have both as an option? it wouldn't be too much of a stretch to allow labelling of items in folders would it?

  6. Tom 13

    Perhaps if users of one of the more popular free email services,

    aren't beating down the doors to use it, labels aren't really a better mousetrap no matter how much the In Crowd thinks it is.

    Me, I want folders and the ability to filter incoming email into them. But I'm not holding my breath either.

  7. Paul Shirley

    so focussed on search the solution is always 'search'

    WTF would anyone need email showing in multiple folders for? Its about as stupid as wanting a different copy in search results for each tag.

    Folders are for grouping, tags are for searching, one is not a substitute for the other. Unless you're Google and the answer to every problem is 'search'. Idiots.

    1. Dafydd Lawrence

      Well it can be pretty useful...

      In the scenario that your colleague sends you an e-mail about the convention in Siberia and includes details of your flight, hotel and schedule. You add a label for "flights", "hotels" and "Siberia Conference".

      Or if a friend e-mails back about the Skiing trip and the Egypt holiday you might have a folder for Friends, a folder for the skiing trip details and a folder for the Egypt Holiday. You would have to make three copies of the e-mail to go in each of those folders.

      Just depends how organised you are or want to be. Different to tags they are like tags with "smart folders".

  8. Anonymous Coward

    How's about...

    YOU give US the choice of both labels AND folders, and let US organise OUR OWN mail how WE want to organise OUR OWN mail...?

    Just a thought, like.

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Um, they do...

      You're welcome to use your fav imap client, such as Thunderbird, which does folders.

      I think the gmail web interface is poo, so I avoid it unless forced. I hate the "deleted mail doesn't really go away, it stays in the 'all' bin" crap too, and set tbird to "move to trash on delete" and "purge trash on exit" which mostly takes care of that.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Deleted mail does go away.

        That was fixed a long time ago. It goes into Trash, which auto-expires. Just as well, too - I don't want the mail I keep swamped by all the mailing list stuff that I delete.

        Search doesn't search Trash by default.

        1. muttley

          Search doesn't search Trash by default.

          Actually, it does:

          "Deleted messages match your search. View them or go to Bin to delete forever."

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    but what about the threading!

    My company has just spent 50K on gmail and the result is everybody thrown into total confusion by this feature. No option to turn it off too.

    Also bugs in the we interface: emails end up in trash about 30mins after arriving in the inbox. This has happened to 13 or so people.

    Still, chrome is really nice.

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