Jul 012011
 

It happened quite some years back. To be precise in the year 2004. Four geeks from Harvard university, launched a web based application, called Facebook. Though initially meant for Harvard students, it was eventually released for the world. At the final count, this web based social networking application became such a craze, that it had more than 600 million registered users. But things started going down spirally. First the decision by the owners about access by third parties to the privacy information about its users. Then very recently, the spam attacks on Facebook has left many sore.

Meanwhile, big daddy Google had tried its hands at something, which even I fail to understand. Google Buzz just made that minimal “buzz” and was out of our mind without a fuss. But then the Page and Brin outfit, would never accept defeat, would they? Their marketing department was silent, but they had something cooking. They had an Ace up their sleeves. It seems as if they were waiting for the right opportunity. And the happenings on Facebook, were like an open invitation to launch their own Facebook killer, as many call it.

And so arrives Google+.

It is supposed to be the solution to all privacy problems.

It is supposed to be the media sharing phenomenon.

It is supposed to update you with just what you need.

It is something people are eagerly waiting for, since registrations are closed at this moment. Oh how long now!!

But while we all wait, here’s a quick glance at this new Google project.

The homepage for this project declares it as “Real-life sharing, rethought for the web

Google+ seems to be made up of 5 different components, Circle(which I suppose will be their USP, since they have place it first in the list), Hangouts, Instant Upload, Sparks and Huddle. Though the terminologies are new, you might find some old product in new packaging. You never know. Here’s what they are supposed to do

Circle

Sharing media on social networks has been a nightmare, with the constant fear of personal stuff falling in the wrong hands. Creating groups in the profiles and trying to share media with them has always been a hassle. In Google+, I tried creating a circle for a particular group in the interactive tour, and it was amazing. No “select all” or “multiple select” or “add to group” buttons involved. Just drag the people from the list & drop in the circle. That’s it. What’s more, you can drag a person from one circle to another, directly. Big question is, what if I want a person in multiple circles. The interactive tour doesn’t have any indication of how to do that. If that’s left out, bye bye Google+. I mean, I may want a person to be in my “Colleagues” circle, my “Car pool” circle and my “Neighbors” circle, can’t I?

Hangout

Video Conference. That explains. Of course, you can inform individuals, or the entire circles about you being in the hangout, and then wait for people to drop by. I don’t know yet if any social networking site has a functional video conference. This could click in Google+. There seems to be some sort of integration with YouTube too, but nothing explained as of now.

Instant Upload

Google+ seems to have a very good integration with mobile devices. All the clicked photos on a mobile device can be set to be automatically uploaded to your private album on the web. With whom to share, you decide later.

Spark

I can’t figure the origin for that name. You type in your interests in the search bar, and the spark gives out related feeds in search results. Select any feed you think you will like, and it gets added to your sidebar, just like favorites list. You can access daily updates from these feeds right in the spark console.

Huddle

Another name for text chat with multiple participants. Most of the chat clients have this feature. Infact, no chat client is deemed complete without this feature.

And why didn’t they integrate it with hangout? Logical, wouldn’t it be?

 

My Final Say

Is that it? Where is the other part? Are they planning to bring out all the features in a phased manner? I don’t demand Farmville, but at least a game of Tic-Tac-Toe!! This application seems like, it has been built for bare minimal functionality, and lots of cosmetics. But on second thought, Google might want to show off the tip of the iceberg, fearing rivals copying some of the important features. Hoping for something more, something really good. Something like Google.

Till it comes out, Facebook is safe.

For registrations, visit this link. Though registration is not yet available(as a matter of fact, stopped for now), Google will inform individuals, as and when it is available.

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