Google has announced an experimental way of reducing information overload by automatically ranking messages in Gmail.
A beta version of the Priority Inbox is to be rolled out this week to users who have enabled the pre-release features option in the Google Apps control panel.
Gmail messages will be sorted according to priority to enable users to see the e-mails that matter faster without setting up complex rules, according to Google.
The alternative inbox view separates important messages by using data such as which contacts users e-mail the most and which messages they open and reply to.
The system "learns" users' priorities over time by analysing how they respond to messages from particular senders.
Users can also improve the ranking in Priority Inbox by clicking the buttons at the top of the inbox to mark conversations as important or not important.
Priority Inbox will cut the time spent on email by 6%, saving a week each year for information workers who typically spend 13 hours on email a week, said Google.
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This was first published in August 2010