Plus: Google+


This week's theme is plus. We might be talking about plus sizes, we might be talking about addition - whatever it is, the word plus will come into play. So let's start with the plus everyone is buzzing about these days, Google+. In case you've been living in a cave or just trapped under something very large, Google+ is Google's version of Facebook. Plain and simple. An alternative, if you will. (Will you?) I've been using it for about 2 weeks now and the jury is still out. There's things that are very cool, like the ability to post status updates that only certain people see (Google lets you group "friends" in circles and give those circles names—like "work peeps" or "relatives" etc.), and there are things that are a pain in the neck, like the ability to post status updates that only certain people see (yes, I wanted someone to see a certain update but forgot she was in my family circle and not my friends circle). So it works both ways. In general though, I like this feature. Facebook has similar functionality but it's hard to set up and even harder to find in their admin sections. Google+ makes it really easy/simple.

There's also the ability to video chat with a bunch of people at one time. This is sometimes called video conference chatting, but Google is way too cool for school, so they call it "hanging out." Below is a video showing some of our friends over at BoingBoing showing how that works.

Then there's the whole "invite only" aspect of Google+ that, while being necessary from a QA point of view, is totally lame from a Web 2.0 perspective. It's just not good for the brand, in my opinion.

What about you all? Do you think Google+ will be the Facebook killer many are proclaiming it will be? Or will this be like Google Wave or Google Buzz and die as quickly as it first appeared? Anyone using Google+ already? What's your experience been?