New Ideas in Email: Kwaga
Occasionally, I'm going to take a break from nit-picking existing mail clients to point to some interesting new ideas for email. It'll be focused on ideas you can use soon, that work with existing email standards - I'm going to hold off on talking about Google Wave until I understand what it's really for.
Today, there's Kwaga - they have a desktop app that shows you what's important in your inboxes. I haven't tried it, but from the website I can tell that they have a lot of good ideas about what might make an email important, and they're willing to spend some CPU cycles to figure it out.
It's basically a service that reads your mail, does some processing, and tells you if there's something you need to see - either it's important or it's a request of some kind, etc. The desktop app then links you back to the web client you use for mail, either GMail or Yahoo.
I love the idea of automated importance filtering - but I haven't tried it, because I dont like the fact that their server reads my email to do the filtering. If they have a desktop app, why not do that processing on the desktop? To be fair, they do say that the servers do not store the emails, and they're moving to OAuth for GMail, so they won't even store your passwords. But it still doesn't sit well, and promises like that won't fly at work.
Anyway, it looks like this kind of thing might be the closest most of us will get to having a personal assistant - so it's worth taking a look at. If anyone reading tries it, please let us know in the comments what you think.