“ Goowy is a rich experience site which helps you manage your digital lifestyle. Goovy provides you with a fresh and powerful environment for managing your webmail, contacts, calendar, rss, widgets (search, bookmarks, photos, weather, stocks, quotes, scores, etc.), and fun flash games. „
Goowy is an online experience site, helping you manage your digital life styles.
Built in flash, it offers you tools so you can organise your email, diary, contacts, play games, use widgets (for searching finding out information like weather etc.) and subscribe to rss feeds. It is available to use both within an internet browser, allowing you to take all your information with you where ever you may go, or as a desktop application for the regular pc you use.
This is the fancy part of the site, but also the most demanding. It is highly recommended you have a quick connection to the internet (broadband) to get the most out of this, although they do offer a stripped down 'lite' version if required.
They have kept the interface very simple and very clean, although no so plain that it is boring. At the bottom of each page there is a menu so you can easily navigate to different sections, and upon logging in you are brought to the main menu screen so you can choose what part of the site you want to go to, or configure some of your settings.
Your are also able to choose your background from a set of skins, or an uploaded picture, adding to the personalised aspect of goowy.
***The Desktop Application***
This can be downloaded from Goowy and installed onto your computer. The desktop application also follows a similar look to the main goowy site. It allows you to login to your account, and then use the connectivity between your desktop and internet to use the settings you have defined for goowy. The desktop application automatically notifies you when you receive an email to your goowy email address, allows you to use the various widgets upon your desktop so you can see the information you want at a glance and you can be notified of upcomming events in your calendar.
All of this is able to be laid out as you like as the individual 'bubbles' can be dragged around and put in a place on the desktop that is easiest for you to use.
I am now going to have a quick look at each of the features Goowy offers you:
The email offers you firstname.lastname@example.org. Along with this you get 2gb of space (although this could be shared by future projects).
The email interface itself is nice and easy. One click from the login screen will allow you to compose an email, and choose from your contacts just by clicking the to button.
You can also receive an emails from your other email addresses, by simply including the pop3 details so that goowy can receive the emails.
Within the webmail you can create your own folders to help organise your emails. Also if you use the desktop application, you can receive an instant alert when a new email arrives in your account.
The calendar is like most others you will find, apart from it shares the goowy look. Each day can be broken down further into time slots and events can be added. If you use the goowy desktop, you can receive a notification about these events before they happen, and future events can be looked at directly from the desktop.
This application is still in beta test.
The contacts form your address book for the email, however you can include more than their name and email. Phone numbers and addresses can also be stored.
Contacts can be entered manually or you can import them from an existing email client such as hotmail or gmail. The option is also there to import from a file, such as from outlook. You can import up to 1000 contacts
If you have a lot of contacts, there is a search option present and you are able to print contact records out for reference.
This is very similar to konfabulator.
You can use your widgets within the web browser, dragging and dropping them top where you want to position them and personalising them so they tell you the weather you want to know, you can view your rss feeds, see how many emails you have, view pictures fromflickr, see itunes top 10, sports scores, stock rates etc. You can then set this page to be the first on you see when you login.
These widgets are then available for you to place and drag around on your desktop if you have installed the goowy desktop client.
Although they have a range of widgets available, they are still more limited than what i currently have with konfabulator on my desktop, so these don't yet offer me a reason to move or install the desktop client like they might with other people.
Goowy offers links to a range of games from within the application. All games appear in a pop-up and it is on these pages where the only adverts are present.
Goowy have not made their own games, instead they are games from places like miniclip.com
The games can be opened within a window from the desktop application.
***What The Future Holds for Goowy***
Goowy is still very new and is still expanding. They are panning to shortly add features such as a file uploader which will use some of your 2gb space. This may be useful for people moving work between different computers. They are also thinking of including a word processor, similar to writely.com, which would be included for users and would add another element for users to find all that they need in one place.
Goowy wanted to make their web application so that it wouldnt have the deer caught in headlights effect, and i think theyve managed to do that. It is very simple to use and looks nice, which will hopefully help people who havent ventured into many internet tasks, start using some. With so many features in one place its easy to learn new things and quite often do what you want to do, without venturing too far.
I still think because it is a new site that they are still learning, sometimes elements of the site dont work or they go slower than normal. They are still also slowly expanding and removing bugs, so i think for now I wont be moving all my email accounts over as I am quite happy with my current set up. However, returning in a few months will hopefully find them completely different with more features to be used, and perhaps then I will think of moving.