By Patrick Salvatierra
One day Google is going to release a downloadable warp-capable space/time traveling machine that will telepathically communicate your every thought to your closest friends. It will also provide Internet search results in real time for whatever mundane question or topic happens to pop into your brain as your Google-fabrication-machine builds the space/time traveling device and installs its Android OS to help you pilot the craft through subspace on your way to Alpha Centauri. Add cybernetic implants and Google will have invented the Borg.
But for now, Google has decided to conquer the realm of social networking. Introducing Google+. Right now, Google+ is still in its infancy, or beta testing, stage. However, everything I despise about Facebook and MySpace is fixed in Google+. The big thing that really sold me was the circles. Circles allow you to easily drag and drop contacts into groups of similar interest or affiliation to you. Just a few examples are co-workers, friends, poker buddies, cinephiles, professors and family. While Facebook actually gives you the ability to make/edit/manage similar categories, they are not user friendly or easy to use and appear to be more of an after-thought than an original part of the website. MySpace gives you the option of putting friends in categories, but I have never tried to change access permissions for those groups. Then again, I don’t think I’ve done anything on MySpace since 2007.
Google+ goes further and allows you to view recent posts by a given circle. For instance, if you want to see what your poker friends are doing, just tell Google+ to display the poker circle, and only friends in that circle will be displayed. Same with any other circle. In short, it’s a much more efficient way of interacting with and managing your online connections with people.
I also like the interface of Google+; it looks like they assimilated Facebook and MySpace and added their own technological distinctiveness. They have made the interface more efficient, and eliminated any irrelevant content. They allow you to determine what is irrelevant by choosing which feeds to display.
Basically, Google+ is social network perfection. Resistance is futile.