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Download Squad points out a problem in Gmail Chat: When you receive a new IM, since it is in a browser window, if you are in a different window or tab, you may miss it.

There’s a new Firefox extension they link to, called Gmail Chat Alert, that can help by playing a sound when a new message is received.

I think it isn’t enough. The point of Gmail Chat is so that you don’t have to install new software. If you’re adding a Firefox extension, why not just install Google Talk, which is pretty light by itself? Yes, there are other good reasons why you’d want to stick with just the browser, but I think the notifications should stick to being browser-only. Why not a really tiny popup window that has notifications, and can sit, almost entirely invisible, anywhere on your screen?

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Nathan Weinberg writes the popular InsideGoogle blog, offering the latest news and insights about Google and search engines.

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  • Guest

    The program GchatAlet you’re referring to above would have been great, because Google’s sound notification for its Gmail Chat is so bad and incomplete, it’s not even funny.

    Unfortunately, GchatAlert has not been updated since 2006, and Firefox stops its installation, (its “install” file states that it is compatible with up to version 2.0 of Firefox).

    It’s interesting that the developer has abandoned his little “child” that would fill a hole in Google chat that Google is indifferent to….

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