Thursday, June 7, 2012

Customized Random Quote Gadget for Gmail

This Google Gadget will return quotes saved in a Google Documents spreadsheet.  It is specifically designed for use with Gmail.  There are options to return a random quote, go to the next or previous quote and search for a quote.

The gadget is easy to set up.  Use the following instructions.

  1. Create a new spreadsheet in Google Documents.
  2. Enter your quotes in the first column.  It should resemble the following:
  3. Click "File" and then "Rename".  Enter a name for the spreadsheet.  You can give it any name that you desire.
  4. Click "File" again.  Select  "Publish to the Web".
  5. Click "Start publishing".

  6. A message will appear in the text box.  It should resemble the following:

    It should resemble the following link:

  7. Copy or make note of the the KEY from the text field (There is another copy and paste operation below that happens before the key can be used).  The key is the long string of alphanumeric letters that follows "key=" and comes before "&output=html".  In the image above, the key is:


    This key will be used when the gadget is installed.

  8. To install the gadget in Gmail, go the gadget's directory page.

  9. Click on the button in the top right corner named "Webmaster tools".  When the menu drops, Click "View source".  The page will relocate to a page showing the code for the gadget.

  10. The important part here is the URL.  Copy it.

  11. Open Gmail.

    1. From Gmail, go to the Labs tab of Gmail Settings.
    2. Look for the Lab “Add any gadget by URL.” Enable it, then click “Save changes.”
    3. Go to the new “Gadgets” tab under “Settings”.

  12. If done correctly, the gadget should now contain quotes from the newly designated spreadsheet.
  13. Paste the URL into the field and click "Add".  If done correctly, the gadget should then appear in the left panel.  It still has the default spreadsheet. 

  14. Click on the "Help" tab.

  15. Scroll down until a text field is visible.  Paste in the key found in step 7 and click "Set".  At this point, the gadget should point to the designated spreadsheet.

The gadget is now ready.

Please note that this is not the best option to install on an iGoogle page or a generic web page. There is another option here.


  1. It's useless- it don't insert the rqndom quote into the emqil message, it only display the quote in left side of browser ;)

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. If it's useless, don't use it or take the source code and modify to insert the quote in the email.

      If you do make the adjustments, post a link so we can check it out.