How to: add ink messages to Gmail



Gmail is absolutely wonderful, but for folks that prefer to "ink" their e-mail for the personal touch, the native support isn’t there. Josh Bancroft sees this as an opportunity for improvement and like many others, I agree with him. For the moment, I’m sticking with Outlook as my primary e-mail client, but that doesn’t mean we can help Josh (and others) out, does it?

Earlier this year in the Tabletscape, Loren Heiny documented a work-around that will get your ink messages in your Gmail for all to see. Note that I said "work-around"; that’s not intended to take away from Loren’s strategy, but I don’t want folks walking away thinking Gmail supports ink natively.

Loren suggests taking advantage of a Gmail feature for your ink: the ability to embed and display public images. By public, I mean images that are stored on a server for the public to see. If you ink your message and store it as an image file on a server, you can embed it in your e-mail messages. Granted: not everyone has server storage that’s viewable by the public; for now however, Josh could save his ink e-mail images on his TinyScreenfuls box and use them in Gmail. Not perfect by any means, but it’s a good stop-gap measure if you’ve got the resources.


doc z

I’m not familiar with picasaweb, but imageshack ( offers free image hosting, with a simple web uploader.


what about using the picasaweb functionality? isn’t that public?

doc z

Fabian, unfortunately that wouldn’t work for the purposes of the article. The Gmail Space is privately accessable by you, using your account name and password, but the images hosted there wouldn’t show up to your email recipient, who would need a publicly available image, without a username or password.

Demetri Poulos

I am unable to fill out gmail with the TIP. Does anyone have a “tip” on enabling the TIP in gmail?


For all Firefox Users like me, here’s a nice extension (compatible w/ versions 1.5 – 2.0.1) called Gspace. It allows gmail users to enable their gmail account (2.5 GB+) as a file storage system that you can access like a server with an integrated ftp client. So here’s a free, functional, and simple way to multifunction gmail for ink email!

Note: gSpace opens an embedded ftp client in a new tab, so that you don’t need an extra program to use it.

I hope that helps! ;)


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