Have a question? Call Google
Here is one for all of you who, like me, do not like to plan things out much in advance:
The same search functions that make Google so useful for planning a night on the town, finding hotels when traveling, getting driving directions, and cheating at trivia contests are available from your cell phone.
Any cell phone--not just expensive blackberry devices with full internet capabilities. You see, Google, like most youngsters, is an expert at text messaging. Send it a text message question, and it will type back an answer in a matter of seconds.
Here is how it works:
Simply type in your question, or a few key words, into a text message, and send it to Google at googl. That's "Google" without the "e", otherwise known as 46645. (You can add the "e" if you want, but it is not needed.)
"Googl" will send the answer back in a text message (sometimes multiple text messages, if its answer is especially long).
How is this useful? I've found many ways in which "Googl" has saved me time, money, and frustration. Below are some examples.
Say you are on a road trip, and need to find a place to stay for the night. You can stop in the next town check at every hotel and motel you see, but that can take some time. And what if the town 10 or 20 miles down the road has cheaper or better places to stay? Or what if you think it does, drive the extra miles, and find out you would have been better off staying where you had been?
Well, Googl is your pocket-sized nationwide yellow pages, and can look up what options there are in each town or even zip code. Text "hotels near Lakeview, OR", and it will send you back the name, address, and phone number for the hotels in that town. You can then call ahead and check prices and amenities, or reserve a room.
If you then need to find your way to the hotel, or if you are just lost in general, you can text Googl for directions. You can get directions from one town to another, such as "Lakeview, OR to Sacramento, CA" or from one address to another (such as "508 Young St., Dallas, TX to 2821 Turtle Creek Blvd., Dallas, TX"). And no, you don't have to use correct capitalization or punctuation, so you can save your thumbs a bit ("508 young dallas tx to 2821 turtle creek dallas tx" works as well).
Need a translator? Text the word "translate", the word or words you want to translate, and the language into which you want them translated. Want to know the current conversion rate for U.S. dollars into euros? Type "1 U.S. dollar in euros", or just "usd in euros".
If you are hanging out with the guys, or the girls, or both; and the group decides to catch a movie, or head to Starbucks, or both; Googl can help you make quick plans for your spontaneous friends.
If you want to watch the movie "Wild Hogs", and you live in zip code 74074, text "Wild Hogs 74074" to Googl. It will return the nearest theaters playing the movie, the show times, and even the rating, genre, and average review (2.4 on a 5-point scale). You can then ask Googl which Starbucks is closest to your zip code-even if you really are in 74074 and the nearest location is 53 miles away.
Want to know whether the weather will be nice for a weekend camping trip? Just text the word "weather" and your town name or zip code to Googl.
Googl can also do measurement conversions, so if you are cooking and cannot find a tablespoon, you can use a teaspoon and ask Googl "how many teaspoons in a tablespoon?" Or, if you are driving in Canada, you can find out that "100 km/h in mph" is 62.1371192 mph.
Girlfriend uses a big word you don't understand? Try "define exacerbate".
Looking at a new digital camera in a store, and wonder if you are getting the best price? Ask Googl to "price" that particular model.
Wonder how your stock portfolio is doing? Text the ticker symbol to Googl for a current quote.
Finally, if you forgot your wife's birthday, Googl can even help you with that-assuming you are famous or married to someone famous. Text her name and the word "birthday" to Googl, and it will reply with the date and year of birth. Or, if you even forget her name, you can text your name and "wife" and get a short biography back. But, that also indicates you may have bigger problems than even Googl can fix.
For more examples, visit http://www.google.com/intl/en_us/mobile/sms/.