Saturday, 16 July 2011

Google+ Review #1

It seems the new Buzz word on the internet is Google+, Googles latest venture. At the moment it is still a work in progress and just like most Google products it is invite only. This time however there seems to be quite an interest in this one, maybe it is not set to fail and be shelved next to Betamax, the Laser disk and Google Buzz.

So, should Facebook and other Social Network sites worry?

Well unless Google remove their trademark invite only policy I don't think there is too much to worry about although I do have to say that there are some features that I do like and a few I don't.

For a start anyone with a Google account knows that you have 1 gig of space to upload photographs to. What some people might not know or may not have realized yet is that any pictures you post on your Blogspot blog if you have a blog there are stored in your Picasa web album (Your 1 Gig of space). This space is also used for any pictures you might upload and share on your Google+ account, to put this into perspective on my computer my My Pictures folder is 909 mb big and contains 1075 photo`s. Now I have read somewhere that Google did announce that any pictures under 8 mega pixels ( I think) will not be counted towards your 1 gig of space, which is nice, thanks Google.

At the moment you can not have any RSS feeds go to your G+ wall (sorry ye who do blog). I am sure to the point of being convinced that this will come in time, remember that Google+ is still a Work in Progress. There is a work-round to getting your feeds to appear on G+ under your Buzz tab which you can see on your profile page.

It is a bit of a faff on but here is how I did it. This is assuming you "Do not" have a Blogspot blog.

1: Add your blogs address to Googles Feed Burner 

2: Once your feed has been created click on Publicize and then "BuzzBoost"

3: Copy the script from the box that says "Your BuzzBoost Is Ready"

4: Go to blogspot and create a blog for your BuzzBoost. Name it and do just the same as you would with any new blog.

5: On your first post switch the post box to HTML View and paste the script you copied into it. Next Click publish. (Now I know you can do that).

6: Going back to Google Buzz. At the top of your Buzz page you should have a "Connected Sites" link. Click on that and add your new Blogspot blog to it. Once you click on save your RSS feed will show as individual RSS feeds in your Buzz wall just like it does on your Blogspot post.

7: Finally Go to your G+ page and click on Edit Profile. Go along to the Buzz tab and make sure there is a check in the box that says "Show This Tab On My Profile".

8: Go and put the kettle on and make your self a cup of coffee, you deserve it.

If anything the space thing and the RSS thing are the only issues (so far) I have with G+. Some of the things I like about it are:

Circles: Let me put it like this, have you ever wanted to make a status update that only "Some" of your friends can see? With Google Circles you can organize your friends and contacts into groups, say, Family, Friends, People I
Follow, Work mates, The Bosses etc. With Circles you can set who see`s your latest update and you can filter your wall so you only see what the people from certain circles are saying. This I like. Sorry, this I +1

Other things include the notifications you get when you log into your Gmail to let you know what has happened since you last logged in, things like So-and-so has added you to his/her circle or has removed you from their circles. Yeah this might be a bad thing if you want to delete someone but on the other side have you ever noticed that your friends list is missing a few people and wondered who has deleted you?

At the time of typing this Google+ apps are only available for Android phones but Google say that they are working on an iPhone app.

At the moment I am still trying to figure it out so can only give it a 6/10 with a side note as I have said a few times "This Is A Work in Progress" so expect some cool and new features.

If you don't have a Google account I'm pretty sure you're going to see some of the features in Google+ turn up on Facebook and the other Social networks in the not too distant future.

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