Les Archives

When HelloFax met the neighborhood firemen

July 21st, 2011

Neal (see more on Neal) was doing a technical interview when he noticed a tree in the back yard burning. We called the fire department, snatched up our laptops and crossed the street. Good thing all our servers are on Amazon. So, we had uninterrupted services on HelloFax.com during this entire episode!

Here are some photos of the fire. The building next to the office (see left) fared far worse than us. The place was pretty much gutted.  At one point, the fire department axed a hole through our office wall to get better access to the white building.  You can also see a hose going through our front door.

On that note, HelloFax is hiring! Never a dull day at the office. If you can still do well on a technical interview, while the building is burning, you’re hired! Email us at jobs@hellofax.com.

HelloFax For Teams!

July 17th, 2011

Let’s say you run a real estate office, or a law firm, and you have multiple employees using HelloFax. It can be a hassle to separately manage everyone’s account. Plus, billing is no fun, since each individual is billed separately. We fixed that problem!

How’s it work?

1. We designate someone as the Team Leader. Email us support@hellofax.com and we’ll set that up!

2. The Team Leader can create or remove accounts, and give members their own, local fax numbers.

3. The Team Leader assumes responsibility for everyone’s billing.

What if someone already has a HelloFax account? You can still invite that person. If the person accepts, the Team leader will simply assume responsibility for that person’s billing.

Want to set up your own Team? Email us at support@hellofax.com and we’ll get you set up!

Extra Security: Turn Off PDF Attachments

July 17th, 2011

People love the idea of fax to email. When you receive a fax, we email you the fax as a PDF. There’s one thing that you should note though: email itself has some inherent insecurities. Most people aren’t concerned, so they insist on having that feature available.

But, for those of you who are extra security conscious, we built the ability to turn that feature off. We’ll still notify you when a fax arrive, but we won’t attach the PDF to the email.

How do you do it? Go to the “My Account” page and unselect:

  • “Include PDF copy in incoming fax emails” and;
  • “Include PDF copy in outbound fax confirmation emails”

That’s it! Let us know if you have any questions.

Secret Feature: Drag & Drop

July 16th, 2011

We’re big fans of usability. We sometimes release a feature, and if it doesn’t work in the UI, we don’t display it.  We’ve had this feature for several months. Since we haven’t had time to make it user friendly, we still haven’t displayed it.

Here it is! You can drag & drop documents into HelloFax.

HelloFax in the New York Times!

July 13th, 2011

Totally unexpected! Check out the article, “Getting By Without a Computer Printer.”

Or, skip to the good part and read this excerpt!

“One of the main reasons many people own a printer is because we still live in a world where a scribble of ink on a piece of paper, also known as a signature, is required for many documents. It remains an infuriating process: You have to print the document out to sign it, then mail it or scan it and either fax or e-mail it back to the sender.

An online service, Hello Fax (hellofax.com), keeps a digital image of your signature on file, which you can then position and resize onto any document you upload to the service. Once the document is “signed,” you can e-mail it or send it to a fax machine from your PC. The service can also, for a fee, provide you with a fax number. Incoming faxes can then be viewed — and signed — onscreen.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself. Love it.

Gmail’s UI Change Makes a lot More Money

July 4th, 2011

I use gmail for my personal email, and Google Apps Enterprise for my hellofax email.  So, sometimes I can see UI tests in action.

Google Apps Enterprise

Notice on the Google Apps Enterprise version, the ” << Back to inbox ” link looks like how the ad looks in the free gmail.

Free version of Gmail

Now, look at the free version of gmail.  They got rid of the “<< Back to inbox” text and replaced it with a backward arrow. I’m so used to looking for a blue text link, that I feel compelled to click on the ad instead. I’m completely blind to a button with black styling.  Plus, blue is really compelling to click on (Bing blue is apparently worth $80 million). Now, the “<< Back to inbox” blue doesn’t compete with the advertisement’s blue.

Is Google Intentionally Optimizing for Clicks?

I’m not sure if gmail optimizes the UI for ad clicks. Intentional or not, I can almost guarantee that a statistically significant number of users now click on the advertisement by accident. At least, people finally notice it again, after getting used to ignoring it. Over time, people get blind to ad placements. One approach is to simply move around the ads. What’s brilliant about Google’s approach is that they just changed the color & made it into button, without moving the UI at all. I’m sure this had a significant impact on the revenue of this ad placement.