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Techmuse: Google+

August 1, 2011

Ed Note: Sorry about the delay in posting. Everything was crazy. I have 4-5 posts lined up, so there will be content this week, I promise!

Google+ has been out for a few months now, and I am wondering how people feel about it. Seems like the mass hysteria to write and comment about it has ended to a degree, so it might be a good time to theorize about usage patterns.

My impression so far is that G+ is very pretty, relatively easy to use and feature rich, but I lack a compelling reason to use it. Circles are great- I love the ability to send out microtargeted messages. The main page interface is simple and easy to read- no complaints there. I don’t have a need for hangouts, or for sparks (which on first glance seem uninspired to me). I think interface wise across the entire system, it’s an upgrade over facebook, which is a plus. Cleaner, easier to use. My one complaint is that I would like to default see my “friends” circle stream instead of my stream of everyone  I follow.

I don’t really have much more to say about this, but I’ll post this quote from an e-mail that was sent to Neil Gaiman about G+. I find it interesting and a reasonable description of what G+ is or may become.  Maybe other people will have thoughts on the program, or the quote.

“The people who told you “It’s not like Facebook, it’s like Twitter!” were wrong. It’s not really like either. If you want to write a short update with a general blast, it’s like Twitter. If you want to write a blogpost with a public audience, it’s like a blog site. If you want to write a blogpost with a closed audience, it’s like Livejournal. If you want to start an online conversation with only four participants it’s like an e-mail thread. And if you want to build and share with discrete communities of people and interact with folks you know, it’s like what Facebook says it is but isn’t. There is no “it’s like this and you’re using it the wrong way,” but that means there’s a lot of flailing around to use it until they figure out a way to help people flail less initially. That’s a developer’s job, to help people use their stuff more effectively and efficiently, and that’s what beta testers are for, to tell them ways they’re succeeding and not succeeding at it.” – credited to Rowan on NG’s blog

One Comment leave one →
  1. Asheleigh Perry permalink
    August 8, 2011 6:26 pm

    My biggest problem with Google+ is that I keep forgetting to use it. I’m so used to Facebook because I can connect all of my other social network sites with it (not that I have all that many – mostly library related – but still…). I haven’t even checked to see if I can do that with Google+ because it takes effort and I’m busy(and lazy) lol. However, I agree that the Google+ interface is nicer and easier to use. If only that interface could be overlayed onto Facebook. The possibilities would be endless. Too bad the two corporations (yes, that is what they are! evil!) don’t get along and are always competing for internet real estate. Facebook was genius when it first arrived on the interwebs (really not that long ago. 2004?) and now all that anyone can really hope to do is improve upon the idea, but my biggest question is “Why did Facebook explode when other sites like Friendster and My Space fell off the face of the Earth for most people?” – I never even thought to use those sites to begin with.

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