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10 Google Docs Features You’ll Probably Never Know If You Don’t Read This

10 Google Docs Features You’ll Probably Never Know If You Don’t Read This

After three years of using a Chromebook and being a student at university for almost one year, Google Drive is a must to master and something that I would never missed out on learning. Here are some super cool tricks that will get you word processing like a professional now you are using Google Drive.

Keep an eye on your collaborators – You can now look at “Activity” within each folder within your Google Drive. You won’t believe how useful this feature is, when you have a group of eager students editing away then to find a document has been deleted by a team member you can then hunt them down based on this feature. It is also useful for reviewing what others have been working on. This feature can be found when clicking the “i” icon on every folder page.

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    Be that colourful inside – When making a folder, don’t be boring. Who wants to be boring? Add some spice to your visuals, click on the drop-down next to each folder to edit the colour of these and bring some life to these dreary documents and folders, they deserve more love.

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      Keep “Recent” nearby – One of the nifty ways to beat the commute to searching through folders and folders to find that one document is to keep the recent tab nearby. This one has saved me many minutes and is good if you are developing a document and need it around to keep editing. To access this find “Recent” on the landing page below “Shared with me” and “Starred” on the left hand side of the screen.

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        Add me! Add me! – This is a great little way to get those features that Microsoft Word has. Using Add-ons within a document allows you to add a feature to the word processing. For example, You can now add a bibliography creator that will save time in your essay writing and many more apps. These add-ons will be added to your add-on library and accessible in any other document, past or present.

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          No don’t leave! – One feature that I feel I should be using more is the Research feature, this is a very hidden feature. Simply go to “Tools” and hit “Research” to take advantage of the ability to research items that you are looking for without leaving the safety of the document. Additionally, you can pull over images which saves a lot of typing of presidents’ names.

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            Keyboard Pro? – Some people just hate the mouse but love the keyboard. Look into “Help” in the menu and find a tab named “Keyboard Shortcuts”. This cracking trick will help you learn the commands to work like a real Google Drive nerd without even leaving the proximity of the keys.

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              Immerse yourself – Want to be in the zone? Perfect chance to get rid of that top bar on the Drive is the two arrows in the top right hand side of the screen. This will push up the menus and leave you with the bare minimum and allow you to focus that attention on the document at hand. Full immersion would be to add “Full Screen” as well using your core PC/Mac/Chrome OS settings.

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                Don’t leave me for Gmail – One of the features that helps your speed when using Google Drive is the email as attachment feature. This is hidden in the “File” tab in menus and with a flick of “Email as attachment” you can send over the document in any format from HTML to PDF to any email address and is a great way to avoid going into emails and getting distracted.

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                  Go back in time! – This feature has become very useful when doing coursework or long documents when you go off on a tangent. You can easily go into “File” in the menu and access “See Revision History” – this will take you to all the times that you have made a change on a document.

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                    Be a font person – In Google Drive, font are very much hidden from the user. Hover over the font drop-down menu and click “Add more fonts”, some of these fonts are impressive and can make your documents look more professional, creative and hipster.

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                      All these tips are great at projecting the best possible usage of Google Drive. After using all these quick tricks after a month, I seemed to be working twice as effectively on Google Drive. Give them a try and don’t forget to ask for any assistance.

                      Featured photo credit: Tech Ticker via tech-ticker.com

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                      Last Updated on February 15, 2019

                      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                      Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

                      Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

                      Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

                      So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

                      Joe’s Goals

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                        Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

                        Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

                        Daytum

                          Daytum

                          is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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                          Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

                          Excel or Numbers

                            If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

                            What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

                            Evernote

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                              I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

                              Evernote is free with a premium version available.

                              Access or Bento

                                If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                                Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                                You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                                Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                                All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                                Conclusion

                                I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                                What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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