I think it stopped working in 1.13 - I remember it being there in 1.12 and there were no updates to that plugin for a long time.
I'm not sure if it wasn't a little bugged though - if I remember correctly the side effect of disabling notifications was that your chat window stopped updating global chat at all. You had to reload the tab (or possibly just reopen the popup window if that's what you used) to get new messages.
The second one could probably be achieved with 3rd party tools already. The best one I can think of would be IFTTT. Each category has an RSS feed, therefore if RSS feed gets updated. Send email. Full IFTTT support would be great, I'm not sure how that would work, but being able to set up that sort of thing would be bloody brilliant. Maybe even baked into nodebb, so we can set up "tasks" similar to how stamplay.com works. Just with a betteR UI.