I consider myself a Google fan. I use Google on a regular basis, a very regular one actually. Also, all my email accounts are managed through Gmail. Google Maps saved me more than once during the 2 years I lived in Southern California; the 405 and the 5 might be good reference points, but moving around the Los Angeles area is a challenge that one cannot face without having printed the directions from Google Maps beforehand. Also, despite not finding it that useful, I really like Google Street View and it made me very happy seeing that Barcelona was one of the first cities photographed.

Google Voice

The latest Google application I started using is Google Voice. Despite not being a ground breaking application and being similar to things you can do with, for example, Skype, it is, once more, a great and really useful Google idea.

When one changes her or his phone number, every one has to be notified, which often represents either a huge email spamming or a public posting of such a private thing as the phone number on Facebook, Twitter or similar social network. It also always involves somebody not getting your new phone number; and Murphy’s law says that will be a former lover who wants to text you again, your grandma, the recruiter you had an interview with 2 weeks ago or somebody who you really want to have your phone number. The solution is, from Google’s point of view, having just one phone number that never changes. Give that number to anyone. That is your Google Voice phone number.

From that number, you can forward calls to your cell, home phone number or even the rejection line, etc, depending on the number who is calling you. You can also have a voice mail that you can check online and transcribes messages for free, you can send text messages for free and countless other options that I will let you discover on your own. And, finally, you can kind of choose your own phone number, so now I have an LA prefix phone number. Not any number is available, though. So new yorkers shouldn’t expect to get a 212, the lost holy grial of prefixes, almost unavailable nowadays.