Webmail 6.3 beta – reviewed

Yesterday the webmail team uploaded some significant improvements to beta.webmail.us

First, reminders:  You can now get SMS text messages sent to your phone for any of your calendar events.  I’ve started testing it out for some of my meetings.  It is a kick ass feature.  I’m not quite ready to fire my trained monkey, but I can tell his days of syncing my Treo with my webmail calendar are numbered.

Second, spell check:  Finally, the built-in webmail spell checker works like a real spell checker.  You can add to a personal dictionary and edit inline, and I think it is even multi-lingual.

HOWEVER… if you’re not the typical webmail user (as we like to call it) and you use the Firefox 2 spell checker… like me, you probably have grown accustom to the MSOffice-style squiggles under your misspelled words.  And you, like me, like to correct your grammar inline as you type.  Which is why Jon and I sh*t our pants yesterday when our squiggles went away.  The current webmail beta forces everyone to use the new-and-improved, squiggle-less spell checker.  But a "persistent dialog" about this issue has paid off.  The webmail team is considering making the disablement of the Firefox spell checker an optional setting.  If you want to continue to use the Firefox 2 spell checker in webmail, please comment on this post.

In the mean time, rather than killing yourself, you can do what I did:

(1) Install Greasemonkey

(2) Save the follwoing to a .js file and open it in Firefox.

// ==UserScript==
// @name          Force Firefox spellcheck on
// @namespace     http://billboebel.typepad.com/
// @description   Force Firefox spellcheck on
// @include       http://*.webmail.us/*/compose/*
// @include       https://*.webmail.us/*/compose/*
// ==/UserScript==
document.getElementById("compose_msg_body").spellcheck = "true";

And while I was looking into how to write my firest greasemonkey script, I found something really cool.  You can also have Firefox 2 spell check the Subject line (and any other single-line text box) by using this:

// Save this to user.js in your Firefox profile directory:
// 0 = spellcheck nothing
// 1 = check multi-line controls [default]
// 2 = check multi/single line controls
user_pref("layout.spellcheckDefault", 2);

Note to self: avoid writing blog posts after drinking with anyone with the last name "Reed".

5 thoughts on “Webmail 6.3 beta – reviewed

  1. Cory Wagner

    I want in-line spell checking. Please do not disable the Firefox spell checker!
    I switched from Outlook to the web interface when the address book was upgraded a couple of weeks ago and I have been very satisfied. Keep the improvements coming.

  2. Pingback: Victory! | Bill Boebel

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