Now I've had a bit of time to play with it - I thought I'd sit
down and write out how I'm getting on with Google+. I have to say,
so far, I really like it. They seem to have learnt a lot from their
previous mistakes and even at this early stage it feels much more
like a product than Wave did in the early days.
The thing I really like about it... The people who
are on here so far. I'm sure that'll change as it gets more and
more popular - but if you look at the list of people in the UK
on http://www.findpeopleonplus.com/ I'd
say 90% of them are in the geek business in one form or another.
It's like a playground for geeks (long may that last!)
I've not tried the Hangouts yet - but if they can up the number
of people watching a Live video that would enable some cool live
comedy broadcasts (something I'm very interested in at the moment).
I recon being able to share a live streaming video with 50 other
people would be enough for an online comedy-club type
So - quick round-up of my experiences so far...
It was very quiet to start with. In order to pick
things up a bit I went on the findpeopleonplus site and added a few
random people who looked like fun and spent a bit of time looking
at friends of friends and adding people I knew. I still need more
people in my circles but it's certainly helped make the G+
experience more fun. However - this did highlight another issue
(which I believe will be fixed in a new release). When one user in
your circles is very noisy or popular - they often drown out the
others, the solution is going to be the ability to disable certain
circles from being displayed in your stream - so I'd be able to
create a "Noisy Buggers" circle rather than having to mute noisy
posts I'm not interested in.
I don't find the Sparks that interesting or useful - perhaps
this will mature over time. At the moment I just don't get it.
Maybe it's because it's very USA-centric or maybe I'm just not its
target audience. If anyone thinks this is cool and I'm overlooking
something amazing - I wait to be taught :)
My Android App doesn't work. It won't let me log in. Keeps
telling me I can't until I have an invite. I clearly have an
invite. Being honest, Google+ will never replace Facebook &
Twitter as my network of choice unless I can use it on my phone. I
know other people aren't having this problem, but I am. So
The UI is lovely, intuitive and nice and clean. I really hope
they don't give too much control when the API comes out so that it
stays nice (rather than MySpace which went messy fairly quickly as
everyone tried to make their profiles "stand out").
Creating Circles is so much easier than Facebook's friend
It's easy to share posts on Twitter & Facebook with the
following Chrome extension:
It's early enough that if you join and do something cool - you
may be able to build up an audience. It feels like the start of
something special - people are going to make their mark using
Google+ and it'll be really interesting to watch that happen.
It's full of geeks!
The Things I'm Looking Forward To:
I'll do another update in a month or so I recon.
I finally got my invite to Google+ (which I am referring to as
Google++) Thanks Kim! I was in two minds about joining as I
was an early adopter of Google Wave which I liked (and look what
happened to that!)
So I joined. Because I'm a sucker for new tech. however the
problem I have at the moment (and the problem I know a lot of
people had with Google Wave) is that I can't find many people I
know on there... Possibly because I have no friends, or possibly
because I'm lazy and want it to tell me who I already know based on
existing contacts within Facebook, Twitter etc.
I'm guessing the reason why you can't search your Facebook,
Twitter or LinkedIn accounts is because they won't let Google do
so? Which is annoying as I'll have to start manually building up
contacts on there.
The other thing which is frustrating is that I can't see any way
to get a simple link to my profile (like
www.facebook.com/owenniblock) which would be nice for posting to
other places. However I will make one with my url shortner - so
there (when I work out what the actual public url for my profile
The big question is, what does Google++ give us that we can't
get from Facebook? Well it's probably better written and the UI is
certainly very nice. I'm guessing Google learnt a lot from the
initial usability and slowdown issues on the Wave and it all seems
pretty responsive so far. The video stuff looks exciting (not used
it yet) and so it's no suprise that Facebook have announced a Skype
I guess the other thing they're trying to show is
better/different is the privacy stuff. The concept of Circles is
smart and the UI is great (loving the drag and drop). Much better
than the Friend List concept in Facebook. I'm pretty sure this will
become a feature I love (much like the Labels concept in
That's my first reaction to it. Google++ seems cool, very well
written and slick however time will tell whether (a) It gets enough
users to rival Facebook and (b) They sit it out and commit enough
to it that people commit to them. If they give up on it like they
did to Google Wave I won't be back on the Google train in a
Will report back after I've been using it a while.