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Super Jamie

Google Buzz

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So, who's using Google's new social networking tool?

You get it automatically if you're a Gmail user. It adds all your Gmail contacts automatically so you (hopefully) already have a friends list.

It's sorta like Twitter, except there are no restrictions on character length, plus you can post photos, link to images/galleries Flickr/Picasa, crosspost from your Twitter, crosspost from sharing items in Google Reader and crosspost from your YouTube account.

Probably the most important feature is the location awareness of posts. Mobile platforms got an update to Maps this week which adds a Buzz layer, where you can find public Buzz posts near you. It comes up on my Android phone like this:



So you can see and reply to posts happening on your area or any area really, for example Buzz in Philly is full of people talking about the epic snowfall they are having.

In your Gmail you don't get to post with a location (you can post without without a location in the Mobile web interface for iPhone and Android, but not in Maps). You can find your friends to "Follow" or Follow anyone else who posts publicly, or search for terms like on Twitter to find what people are Buzzing about a certain topic.

The Gmail interface looks like this:



I've found it useful so far, there's a few people in my city using it, mostly nerds like web designers and IT workers like myself. I also found a dude who has a Nexus One (the Android phone not available here in Australia yet) and told me a safe non-dodgy-ebay-via-hong-kong-ripoff way to aquire one, so in two days Buzz has been more useful to me than Twitter has been in two years.

Anyone else "caught the Buzz"? What are your thoughts on it?

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Google Buzzword? ;) Yeah, it popped up in my Gmail the other day. It did so for some of my friends too. We kind of tested it and left it. We have no need of it. Maybe it would be cooler if we all had Android phones.

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If they could all their little apps into one big app, that would be great. Don't complicate, simplicate.

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Bucket said:

If they could all their little apps into one big app, that would be great. Don't complicate, simplicate.


THAT'S WHAT THEY'RE DOING DUDE

If you haven't noticed by now how ridiculously integrated all of Google's apps are with each other, then... I guess there's no hope for you.

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I didn't check it out at all. I just chuckled over how it seemed like they're trying to do whatever it is that Facebook does.

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Mr. T said:

If you haven't noticed by now how ridiculously integrated all of Google's apps are with each other, then... I guess there's no hope for you.

I thought this at first too, but I've come to realise there's actually a different opinion many have on this. I can't pinpoint the exact problem people have with Google's service interfaces, but I've seen the word "clutter" thrown around alot and also the fact that to use concurrent services Gmail, Docs, Maps, Wave and Search all at once you need to have a browser tab open for each.

I love the way Google presents their suite and I don't see any of the competition even coming close to the consistency and integration G provides, but I think critics who push UI designers to make something which is already great even better are a valuable thing to have.

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I googled 'buzz' and it sent me to some kind of social quiz or something, about "frustration, concentration celebration". I dunno...

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If I have issues with Google's UI design or anything related to the services' user experience, it's that they're partially integrated while I, as a user, am expecting that the different services would be separate. Mind you, I only use the search engine, gmail and google maps (though I've used google docs once), and I enter them through bookmarks or browser plugins. So when I'm using gmail I automatically expect that I'm using a separate e-mail service that just happens to be provided by Google, and when I go to google maps without signing out from gmail I get confused because I'm suddenly signed in in google maps as well.

It's not necessarily a bad thing, mind you, but it's unexpected. I'm expecting that, when I go to the map service, it's a completely separate product. I'm not using these services through any kind of a suite frontend (ewwwww), so any kind of integration feels unnecessary. I'm expecting the services to be separate islands in a sea, while they're more like branches of a tree.

And no one ever told me that they're branches of a tree. That's my (only) problem with Google.

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Really that is one of the biggest draws to me. I can easily integrate my email, chat, document collaboration, directional maps, notepad and now social networking all through the one account.

I guess I am happy with the service because the company is somewhat ideologically aligned to my liberal beliefs on freedom, though perhaps they could go a bit further as far in regards to re-contribution to libre software.

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It's not as much that it's integrated, but that the integration isn't obvious enough/doesn't meet my expectations as a user. If Google would be upfront about it that would be ok, but right now it's not (at least in my experience).


note: Keyword is expectations.

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To me the integration is more interesting more than the actual app. Call me old fashioned, but I still haven't gotten behind the whole "tell everyone everything you're doing exactly when you do it and at what location on your GPS." But Google does shit right. I would be far more willing to use this, with gmail contacts already contributing to the network, than facebook. (Which I don't use.) Or twitter. (Which is the dumbing down of the internet. And attention spans.)

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There's nothing wrong with Facebook, and I definitely see the appeal, but I guess Myspace burnt me out on Social Networking, made it feel like a fucking chore. Paired with the fact that my mom is all about Facebook, and would probably use it to nag me about how she thinks I'm anti-social.

Anti-Social isn't really the word for me, because I love people, and love talking with people, but I really don't go out of my way to form tight bonds and friendships with people unless they happen naturally, like say through my hobbies. And I don't really feel like going through the motions of having a girlfriend right now (note, it's probably been like 3 years since I have) so, that's that. My family can't conceive of how that would ever be possible though, so me being on facebook would probably be like my mom looking at cute girls who she thinks I would be interested in who are in my class. So I can live without it.

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Shaikoten said:

Mom interfering with Facebook

hahah, don't befriend her? "sorry mom, you understand, right?"

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Super Jamie said:

It's sorta like Twitter, except there are no restrictions on character length, plus you can post photos, link to images/galleries Flickr/Picasa, crosspost from your Twitter, crosspost from sharing items in Google Reader and crosspost from your YouTube account.

So it's basically THE INTERNET

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Its like a browser inside of a browser. This is all fine and dandy. But what about Wave? Isn't Wave supposed to be the future? Make that more useable damnit!

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Hmm I saw it like a week ago when I logged onto my Gmail account. I havnt messed around with at all yet but its Google so Im sure its good and Ill have to check it out later.

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Google Buzz is fucking terrible. But what confuses me the most about it is that they already have a fucking terrible social networking website, why'd they go make another one? They could have tried to unfuck orkut, maybe they didn't want to deal with the immense BR rage that would have ensued.

Oh well, hopefully it'll get thrown on their mountainous half-baked software pile and get ignored by everyone.

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Patrick said:

Its like a browser inside of a browser. This is all fine and dandy. But what about Wave? Isn't Wave supposed to be the future? Make that more useable damnit!

I partly agree. They seem to have become a bit lost since the early negative reception to Wave. They should have just stuck with that technology and iterated/integrated it a bit more.

Yeah now I'm sensing the stank of committee decisions percolating into this. Oh well. Hopefully some Wave features will find their way into Buzz eventually.

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Did anyone catch the insane feminist blogger who made Google change some of the security settings? Here post is mirrored here.

She's since protected her private blog which was 99% about rape, being raped, not being raped, and I assume how she was raped. Poor woman.

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Super Jamie said:

Did anyone catch the insane feminist blogger who made Google change some of the security settings? Here post is mirrored here.

She's since protected her private blog which was 99% about rape, being raped, not being raped, and I assume how she was raped. Poor woman.

Da fuck?

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Google have stuffed-up big time here, I use Gmail as a spam filter - NOT a social networking hub. Only took a few minutes to delete the Buzz profiles and hopefully that's the end of it.

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Belial said:

Oh great, so I got signed up to that shit by default?

Not any more.


Yeah...I hate that. They're doing something similar with youtube and soon your original password won't work there, and that sucks for people like me that can't remember passwords half of the time ><

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