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Goodbye Outlook - Gmail now lets you paste images directly from clipboard (beerpla.net)
64 points by archon810 1113 days ago | comments


zavulon 1113 days ago | link

Half a year ago, I would've pumped my fist and screamed "Hell yes". That was the biggest feature I've missed in Outlook.

However, Gmail has been so excruciatingly slow that a month ago, I've switched back to Outlook (Outlook for Mac 2011), and haven't looked back since. It feels really good to use an email client again that responds to what I do instantenously. Web email clients still have a way to go.

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d_r 1113 days ago | link

This is interesting. Are you using Firefox by any chance? I was incredibly frustrated with Gmail speed on Firefox for a couple of years, but after switching to Chrome haven't seen a problem on any of my boxes.

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pistoriusp 1113 days ago | link

I had the same experience, but with Safari instead of Firefox. Really wonder why this is happening.

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Garbage 1112 days ago | link

More specifically, if you have Firebug, then it slows down Gmail considerably.

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roel_v 1112 days ago | link

But gmail detects it, and tells you about it - at least it did for me.

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RuadhanMc 1112 days ago | link

I'm using Google Apps and haven't noticed any slow down. Still happy as Larry.

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

Are you from China by chance?

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archon810 1112 days ago | link

Why the downvote? It's a known fact that the government there is purposely slowing down access to Google properties.

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blub 1113 days ago | link

Native e-mail clients still have the advantage of working with any e-mail server, including those that don't serve ads based on analyzing my e-mails.

The whole local e-mail folder can be backed up to your favourite online backup if you feel that it's not safe to keep just a local copy.

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psykotic 1112 days ago | link

Here's the one thing about Gmail that drives me nuts: It doesn't let you preview its line wrapping. This is terrible when you're including bits of code in an email. How hard could it be? You could even pull it off half-decently with Greasemonkey.

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eli 1112 days ago | link

Ability to drag images is not what's keeping people on Outlook.

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lini 1113 days ago | link

Are you sure this is a Gmail feature and not a Firefox feature? I have been able to paste images into RTEs (rich text editors) since Firefox 3. If the image comes from the clipboard, Firefox will add the image data inline. It works in all RTEs I use - e.g. http://ckeditor.com/demo , http://demos.telerik.com/aspnet-ajax/editor/examples/default...

Since the src of the image is inline, you can save/send it as part of the HTML output of the editor - no attachments or separate upload is needed.

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

I can't test this now, but I remember trying it many times in Firefox, and every time I'd get a little icon that showed a little broken image. It was only after the Firefox 4 upgrade, that it started working (well in gmail's case, kind of working).

Having looked into what gets sent, it is definitely a Firefox thing, but for me, it only started doing it with 4.0, so hence this post.

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robszumski 1112 days ago | link

This is a browser feature. It wraps images with <img> tags just like it wraps email addresses in a <a href"mailto:"> link when copied. The text editor just renders this HTML.

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tapp 1113 days ago | link

Can someone here confirm this is actually working for them? (Paste an image from the clipboard, send the email, check that the inline image was actually attached)

It appears to me that FF4 is merely displaying the clipboard image in the rteditor in draft mode, but it is not actually attached to the email when sent.

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redstripe 1113 days ago | link

I didn't for me. Looking in my sent box the message had an inline stream rather than an attachment:

<img src="data:image/jpeg;base64,/9j/4AAQSkZJRgABAQAAAQABAAD/7QAcUGhvdG9zaG9wIDMuMAA4QklNBAQAAAAAAAD/2wBDAAMCAgICAgMCAgIDAwMDBAcEBAQEBAgGBgUHCgkKCg...

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guelo 1113 days ago | link

Same here. Looking at the email source the MIME looks like it should work, but for some reason clients aren't interpreting it as HTML.

  Content-Type: multipart/alternative; boundary=000e0cd3282edb3e4e04a04d2812
  
  --000e0cd3282edb3e4e04a04d2812
  Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1
  
  
  
  --000e0cd3282edb3e4e04a04d2812
  Content-Type: text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1
  Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
  
  <img src=3D"data:image/png;base64,iVBORw0KGgoAAAANSUhEUgAABJ8AAAQaCAIAAABik=
  k5NAAAgAElEQVR4nOzdd1QbZ77wcZK9e7O7d7PZTbmbZN+N49gG9xLHveACmOYKGIONe6V3MO42=

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

I just posted an update with some findings - basically, those "3D" and =\r\n characters that something is adding (somewhere in Gmail) are messing everything up. We're this close to a working version of this...

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guelo 1113 days ago | link

Oh yea, I didn't notice that 3D. It's weird because ascii 3D is just an = sign.

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thwarted 1113 days ago | link

=3D indicates quoted-printable encoding for 7-bit transports.

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patrickaljord 1113 days ago | link

Works fine here on both chrome 12 and ff4 on ubuntu.

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

Can you verify it actually works on the recipient side? I actually just tried send it out and found that the email actually ate up the image and it was not showing up.

I may have jumped the gun here...

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

That is actually a correct way of creating an image inline and should work, but Gmail or something in Firefox is adding extra characters into the mix and messing everything up. See the update in the article.

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ahrjay 1112 days ago | link

Here's some interesting observations, this will work on any document that is in designMode or any element that has contenteditable attribute.

Firefox doesn't have the clipboardData interface like IE, Chrome and Safari have so it must be built into Firefox. From a quick look it seems like it doesn't expose the stream data to JavaScript which is unfortunate, I would love for this to be available.

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sigzero 1112 days ago | link

You can drag and drop them too. Just found that out the other day.

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aymeric 1113 days ago | link

Finally! Now my screenshot workflow is down to two steps:

Win+S (OneNote screenshot feature) CTRL+V

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rodh257 1113 days ago | link

Snipping tool (Vista/7) has similar functionality, I keep it pinned to start menu, though more often than now I use Alt + PrintScrn to just copy the active window to clipboard.

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kprobst 1113 days ago | link

I use Cropper (http://cropper.codeplex.com/). Works great, and both Notes and Outlook take the Ctrl+V just fine. Cropper can also be used to intercept PtrnScrn commands.

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

That is exactly what mine is too. I believe this makes us roughly 100 times more productive compared to those who need to cut an area from a screenshot and use something like Print Screen + PhotoShop.

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rdamico 1113 days ago | link

This is a big step forward for Gmail. Now if they could just add some simple mail merge functionality, that would be another super-useful feature.

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quannum 1112 days ago | link

I tried to drag a file onto a gmail message the other day. It didn't work. Now that would get rid of Outlook for a lot of people.

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shrikant 1112 days ago | link

This feature's been available on modern browsers for nearly a year now..

http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2010/04/drag-and-drop-attachme...

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archon810 1112 days ago | link

Yeah, that works fine, you just have to drag it into the area that gets highlighted for dropping.

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jupiter 1112 days ago | link

This actually works for me.

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ronnier 1113 days ago | link

Is not working for me. I also use Google for my domain, if that matters.

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mitali 1113 days ago | link

This has been a Gmail Labs for a long while... I have it enabled for all 3 of my gmail accounts for a while now.

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rodh257 1113 days ago | link

Has it? I've specifically checked for it on a number of occasions. I've seen the ability to drag and drop images there, but not paste a screenshot from clipboard.

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archon810 1113 days ago | link

There is no labs project like that. You're correct - I've been also checking for ages.

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