If you and gmail go back a ways, MIT have created a very interesting online tool. Immersion can show you who you communicated with, at what times, who introduced you to whom and how your various contacts are interrelated. Data is displayed as a web of connections, and clicking on the individual nodes/people drills down into their specific statistics. MIT do not scrape your email content, just the from, to, CC and timestamp fields, and that seems to be enough to generate some fascinating information.
If you spend much of your day in front of a computer, and also reply to innumerable texts on your mobile, Mighty Text provides a workable solution to bringing the two together. Sign up to the free service and "send & receive SMS and MMS from your computer or tablet, using your current Android phone number. Messages stay in sync with your phone's SMS inbox." Imagine typing texts on a full sized keyboard — as they say in the classics, OMG!
Smartr is a powerful free extension for Google Chrome. It adds a sidebar to Gmail (this is where having a big screen is useful in keeping clutter at bay). The sidebar houses an enhanced contacts manager. When installed, Smartr goes through your contacts and gives you the option of adding your Facebook and Twitter accounts. When you click into an email or start to compose a new email, Smartr calls up everything it knows about the person who sent it or the person you are about to send it to, including recent tweets and facebook updates, photographs and other information. It also gives you a history of your email contact with that person and identifies other people you often email in association with them. Smartr surfaces quite a bit of information from within and outside Gmail in a very effective fashion, and could be very handy for businesses trying to leverage their existing contact lists.
After years of requests from frustrated users, Gmail labs finally offers a preview pane option -- meaning, gasp, a user can now do what they have always been able to do in desktop mail clients -- read the bloody email with clicking into it. With many desktop PC users using very large screens, they have real estate to burn and a preview pane feels like an efficiency improver -- every second counts!
If you have abandoned your old, archaic email package for the cloud-based goodness that is gmail, you may benefit from learning gmail's shortcuts and efficiency enhancing options. Google has provided a page of resources for business users, but they apply equally to any user.