Announcing: AppSheet Chat Apps now available to preview program!

We’re happy to announce that AppSheet-powered no-code chat apps are now available in preview for Workspace customers in AppSheet!

You can access this feature right now if you are in the Preview Program, and you can provide any feedback in this thread. If needed, additional information can be found in our help center articles. We’re targeting a full launch for later this year.

I’ve been spending a fair bit of time in Google’s ‘no-code’ platform AppSheet. Even for developers there is plenty to get your teeth into with features like Apps Script integration. One of the incredibly powerful core features of AppSheet is the ability to send dynamic emails which include forms designed in AppSheet. These allow users to interact with your app without leaving their inbox.

Whilst the inbox dominates in many business sectors, support for frontline workers increasingly leans on other communication channels including Google Chat. With the announcement of AppSheet powered no-code Google Chat apps there is now an opportunity to also push dynamic forms, send data and interact with Chat users in that space. For developers there is also the opportunity to do even more with the Apps Script integration. Follow the link to the announcement post to find out more…

Source: Announcing: AppSheet Chat Apps Now Available to Preview Program!

Apps Script has deprecated the Contacts service. Instead, use the People API advanced service | Release Notes | December 16, 2022

Apps Script has deprecated the Contacts service. Instead, use the People API advanced service. Refer to Migrate from Contacts service to People API advanced service.

Having taken bit of a break from Pulse over the festive period I had missed the December release note announcing the deprecation of the Contacts service, ContactsApp . There isn’t much time to update your code as the service will no longer function after April 30, 2023. Google have however provided detailed guidance on migrating from Contacts service to People API advanced service.

[HT to Pablo Felip @pfelipm for flagging this update on Twitter]

Source: Release Notes | Apps Script | Google Developers

Highlights from the Google Workspace Developer Summit 2022 – The state of Workspace development is good!

Busy old couple of weeks at CTS and it’s been nice to get back to some face-to-face events. Last week I had the pleasure of joining the Google Workspace DevRel team on stage at the Google Workspace Developer Summit, London co-presenting with some guy called Charles Maxson.

A couple of years ago as part of Totally Unscripted we did a ‘State of Script‘ episode with then Apps Script PM Keith Einstein. This latest clip from the Google Workspace Developer YouTube channel captures not just the state of script, but the wider state of Workspace Dev.

The clip is worth a watch to get a summary of some of the new features coming to Workspace development. For me, not only is there plenty to get excited about my overall feeling from the Summit was Workspace development is now a first class citizen in the Google Cloud family. The state of Workspace development is good!

Source: Highlights from the Google Workspace Developer Summit 2022!

Apps Script added a new method to the Utilities class parseDate(date, timeZone, format) | Release Notes | November 3, 2022

Apps Script added a new method to the Utilities class. parseDate(date, timeZone, format) parses a provided string date according to the specification described in the Java Standard Edition SimpleDateFormat class.

Given the popularity of handling data using Google Apps Script I’m sure many will welcome the inclusion of a parseDate() method which was included in the most recent release notes.

Source: Release Notes | Apps Script | Google Developers

Introducing AppSheet databases: Build data driven apps for Google Workspace

Over the past year, we’ve added more functionality to AppSheet, extending how it can maximize the power of Google Workspace through integrations with products such as Gmail, Google Drive and Apps Script. To improve the experience for app creators and users, we’re excited to introduce in public preview AppSheet databases, a built-in database for citizen developers to easily and securely manage their data.

During public preview, access to AppSheet databases will be enabled by default for everyone but it will not affect existing apps. Use of this feature in public preview will be included at no additional cost in your AppSheet subscription plan, but limited to 10K rows per table, 20 tables per database and 20 databases per user. Please note that these limits may change when the feature is generally available.

For people who tuned in to TU3.5: New workflow solutions with Tables and Google Apps Script back in 2020 AppSheet databases will look very familiar. Since that episode the Area 120 team behind the Tables beta moved into Google Cloud and specifically AppSheet.

The big question for me is whether AppSheet databases can find a sweet spot for citizen developers looking for something with more performance than a Google Sheet and easier to setup than a Google Cloud project. In public preview AppSheet databases are limited to 10,000, which interestingly is the same limit as the old paid version of Tables.

Ultimately this may however be less able size and performance but a data solution that the AppSheet team has full control, particularly removing a reliance on features developed by the Google Sheets team.

Source: Introducing AppSheet databases: Build data driven apps for Google Workspace

How Google Workspace is delivering innovation for the future of hybrid work | Google Cloud Blog

Google Workspace is the most popular productivity tool on the planet — relied on by more than 3 billion users. To help organizations thrive in a hybrid world, we’ve invested heavily in immersive connections, our approach to bringing people closer together through our communication products, and smart canvas, our next-generation collaboration experience, while enhancing our cloud-first security model to help people work safer.

Today is the first day of Google Cloud Next ’22 and this flagship event is being used to announce a number of upcoming features for Google Cloud and Workspace. This post (source link at the end) from the Google Cloud blog gives a summary of some of the key announcements including:

  • Bringing people together with immersive connections – which announces a number of new features being introduced to enhance Google Meet, the much requested feature to include inline threaded conversations in Google Chat as well as broadcast only Chat spaces
  • Collapsing the boundaries between people and apps with smart canvas – which highlights updates, mainly to Google Docs, to enhance productivity with custom building block and user defined variables. Google Sheets is also getting some smart chips enhancements including smart chips data extraction and third party integration as well as a new timeline view rolling out this month
  • Work safer with Google – a reiteration of Google’s commitment to security with updates on data loss prevention being extended to Google Chat, Trust rules in Drive and client side encryption for Gmail and Calendar
  • Extending the power of Workspace – the one perhaps of most interest to Pulse readers are the opportunities to build on Google Workspace with additional APIs for Meet and Chat, a Meet add-on SDK to third party integrations directly in Meet, and an official Google Chat integration from AppSheet apps.

For some of these announcements you’ll have to wait until 2023 at the earliest to get your hands on them. For a wider narrative and to see how the tech press is responding to today’s Google Cloud Next ’22 announcements here are some stories that have caught my eye:

Source: How Google Workspace is delivering innovation for the future of hybrid work | Google Cloud Blog

Updated Apps Script integrated development environment will replace the legacy experience by Q4 2022 | Release Notes | September 27, 2022

Apps Script has turned down the legacy integrated development environment (IDE) in favor of the redesigned IDE that launched in December 2020.

Google have announced the updated Apps Script editor will replace the legacy experience by Q4 2022. Whilst the new IDE was a huge step forward there are some core features from the old Script Editor, which will hopefully make it into the new IDE before Q4. The ones I hear most often are access previous script versions and search/replace across project script files. For the later in the meantime I recommend looking at the Black Apps Script Chrome extension. Whilst this extension primarily enables a true dark mode it also lets you search across script files.

Source: Release Notes | Apps Script | Google Developers

Google launches a YouTube channel dedicated to Google Workspace development

Welcome to the Google Workspace Developers YouTube Channel, where developers of all types can learn about building solutions with Google Workspace. Explore the full range of the Google Workspace Platform from Apps Script to Chat Apps to Workspace APIs and more. Leverage Google Workspace’s products such as Gmail, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drive, and many more to customize, integrate, or extend these products with our developer tools. Visit our website →

Google has just launched a new YouTube channel dedicated to Google Workspace developers. Google Apps Script community members might recognise the first featured video series on the ‘Anatomy of Google Chat apps’, which is presented by Chanel Greco who recently joined the Google Workspace Developer Relations team. As well as featuring a curated collection of previous Google content on topics from no to low code solutions the channel also includes content from the wider community.

Source: Google Workspace Developers

Google Workspace sessions not to miss at Google Cloud Next | Google Cloud Blog

Join us online or in-person at Google Cloud Next ’22, our flagship event where over 1 million people across the globe come together to learn and grow. Don’t miss out on meeting other IT and security professionals, developers, and business leaders. Learn about the latest product announcements and hear valuable insights from Google executives, including Thomas Kurian, Google Cloud CEO, and Aparna Pappu, VP and GM for Google Workspace. You’ll also hear inspiring stories from our global customers, such as Airbus and Iron Mountain, and technology partners like Asana, about how they’re using Google Workspace in their organizations.

A recent post on the Google Cloud blog highlights the Google Workspace lineup of keynotes and sessions not to miss at Next ’22. There are a range of sessions from Google, global customers and partners.

Source: Google Workspace sessions not to miss at Google Cloud Next | Google Cloud Blog

New behaviour in V8 runtime removing script order limitation | Release Notes | June 6, 2022

We’ve been a little remiss highlighting the latest Google Apps Script release notes, but in case you missed it there has been an update to the V8 runtime:

You can now call functions in separate files before they’re parsed. Previously, the V8 runtime required a script file to be parsed before any other file could call the functions it defines.

Now, the order of files in the Apps Script editor doesn’t matter. This means that you can call a function in a different file to assign a value to a global variable—the function is always defined before it’s called. This behavior reflects that of the legacy Rhino runtime.

See the source post for more details and an example code snippet.

Source: Release Notes | Apps Script | Google Developers

Programmatically manage and apply Drive Labels using new API functionality

Many of our customers already take advantage of the Drive Labels capabilities to classify content and implement policies on their Drive files for governance and Data Loss Prevention.

Today, we’re happy to announce a highly requested update that will enable you to programmatically manage labels at scale via Drive APIs.

Google Workspace devs might be interested in this update to the Drive Labels API which enables additional functionality. As noted in the source post:

The new Drive Labels API supports reading Drive Label taxonomies. New functionality in the Drive API can be used to apply labels, set fields on files, and find files by label metadata. As a whole, these new API features enable numerous use cases including, bulk-classification, Apps Script driven workflows, third-party integrations, and other organizing and finding needs.

The post includes links to a number of useful resources including reference documentation.

Source: Programmatically manage and apply Drive Labels using new API functionality

Creating Google Workspace Chat Apps: What developers need to know – [online event 24 August 2022 16:00 – 16:45 UTC]

Image credit: Google

Teams and organizations are shifting to Google Chat as their primary way to stay connected and collaborate in real time, giving developers the unique opportunity to build Chat-integrated Google Workspace apps to help their users do more. In this session, we’ll discuss use cases for chat apps, the architectural options you can choose from, and how to get started building your own. Make sure to bring your questions!

Charles Maxson and Chanel Greco are both top presenters and they will be teaming up on the 24 August 2022 for a Google Cloud OnAir event to share the latest on Google Chat app development. For those unfamiliar there are various platforms/architectures for developing Chat apps, one of which is Google Apps Script. You should be able to find out more about this and more at the session.

Source: Creating Google Workspace chat apps—what developers need to know

Make software development much more agile with Google Workspace [Google Chat apps and Add-ons]

Image credit: Google

Learn how developers use Google Workspace to centralize and integrate all of their favorite Agile and DevOps tools like Jira, GitHub, Datadog, and PagerDuty.

From the Google Cloud Blog you can learn how Google Workspace is being used to make software development more agile. For Google Workspace developers this includes a number of products you might want to consider. Additionally, this post is a great way to see how Google Chat apps and Workspace Add-ons are being seamlessly integrated to expand the functionality of Google Workspace. If you haven’t recently looked at the opportunities with developing Google Chat apps you probably should…

Source: Make software development much more agile with Google Workspace | Google Cloud Blog

How to reach global markets as a Recommended for Google Workspace app

Today we announced our 2022 Recommended for Google Workspace apps. This program offers a distinct way for third-party developers to better reach Google Workspace users and attract new customers to their apps. So, for those developers who may be interested in it in the future, we wanted to walk through the basics of what the program is and how to apply for it.

Back in June 2021 Google announced they were restarting the “Recommended for Google Workspace” program. Partners who applied to this program were required to demonstrate “the quality of their solution, their strategic investment in Google Workspace integrations, and security and privacy posture”.

The 2022 Recommended for Google Workspace apps have recently been announced. This post from the Google Workspace team provides more information about the Recommended for Google Workspace program and how to apply for the next application window [spoiler: it will be announced via the Google Workspace developers newsletter – subscribe to avoid disappoint].

Source: Reach global markets as a Recommended for Google Workspace app