Around six months after it added the drag-and-drop feature to Gmail, Google has now introduced the feature to its web-based productivity suite, giving Google Docs users yet another way of adding images to their documents. The HTML5-driven feature is currently only supported by the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox and Safari.
“Google documents already has three ways to add images: you can choose them from your hard-drive, add them by URL, and you can find them using Google Image Search,” Philipp Weis, a software engineering intern at Google, wrote in a blog post.
“But sometimes the exact image you need is on your desktop and you just want to add it to your document quickly. Starting today, you can drag images from your desktop directly into your documents.”
The drag-and-drop feature is a legacy of the company’s ill-fated collaboration tool Wave.
Users of the Chrome and Firefox 3.6 browsers got a nice treat today courtesy of Google. Gmail in those browsers now supports drag and drop file attachments. Instead of using the attachment link to bring up a file explorer window, you can just drag files into the Gmail interface and have them uploaded automatically. The feature works with multiple file uploads and requires no tinkering with settings.
Dragging a file (or files) anywhere in the Gmail window will bring up a special box in the area usually reserved for attachments. Simply drop the file(s) anywhere in that box to upload. Google hinted in their blog post that the feature was only being enabled in Firefox 3.6 and Chrome due to a some missing features in other browsers. Perhaps some sort of HTML5 support?
We really dig this feature, and hope that Google adds more UI elements that are this intuitive. Is this the sort of feature you'll use? Anything you've really been hoping Gmail would implement?
Creative has filed a patent that could change the way we operate touchscreen devices. Filed back in January under the 3DLabs brand, the patent describes a drag and drop user interface with "action tabs."
In a nutshell, users would be able to manipulate "action" areas of the screen and drag objects (like a music title or video, for example) onto an action tab. Or as Creative describes the technology in its filing:
"A system and methods for a novel user interface of a touch sensitive screen for pocket device. The user interface contains display items and action tabs. Display items are configured to be draggable if being dragged at substantially horizontal direction; display items are configured to be scrollable if being dragged at substantially vertical direction. Dragging and releasing a draggable item to an action tab causes a specified action or a sequence of actions being applied to the item."
Because Creative filed the patent under its 3DLabs brand, now known as ZiiLabs, we wouldn't be surprised to see this technology show up on the Zii EGG.
Google recently introduced another tweak to their Gmail interface, allowing users that aren’t quite at home with the labeling system to use them as folders.
With the introduction of drag and drop to Gmail, your list of labels will move from the lower left-hand corner to the upper left-hand corner, directly underneath “Inbox” and “Sent Mail.” Google hopes that this will allow users see them more like traditional folders.
Drag and drop comes into play with the use of the labels themselves. Instead of adding tags to each individual message, you’ll instead be able to drag and drop your messages into the label of your choosing.