I am actually hoping that Google resists the temptation to fight a war of feature creep with Facebook. In fact, the sum total of my enjoyment of G+ has come from the cleanliness and austerity of its UX (well, maybe combined with the refreshing Circles concept -- but that's arguably a "cleanliness" measure of a different sort).
Personally speaking, I'm totally comfortable with a social network as simply a credentialing and sharing layer running through my other experiences and touchpoints on the web. I don't need everything in one place. I am willing to admit that I might be an odd man out on this sentiment, however.
Ignoring the issue of user network adoption, I would love to drop Facebook in favor of G+. But I can't until G+ at least replicates some things it's missing from FB, like Events, and possibly better one-on-one messaging (which I would hope would take the form of email backed by GMail, just as G+ photo sharing is backed by Picasa), and some form of groups/shared circles.
But agreed in that I don't want to see G+ succumb to feature-creep. While I do want to see some sort of API/platform to build stuff, if G+ gets crapped on with Zynga-madness, it'll make me cry.
Yes, it would be great if we could separate the social infrastructure from the social apps. If Facebook ever goes under or out of style, we'll lose the graph of everything that's been put on it. But if we had an infrastructure of just a "Rolodex on steroids" that the Facebooks, Google+s, even Youtubes, etc. could build on, that would never be a problem. When you buy a new phone, you don't have to recompile a phonebook.
That sounds like Google Contacts, but I'm not sure if it's taggable. It's what Google uses to automatically bring up your contacts when you activate a new Android phone, suggest friends in G+, and emails in GMail.
Edit: It is taggable, sort of. Head to contacts.google.com and you can search your contacts, as well as place things in a "Notes" field. There's also groups, but I don't know if they're one per contact or labelable.
Oh I make frequent use of Google Contacts. The high order bit that makes social networks a better Rolodex is that the contact takes some onus in keeping their contact and profile information up to date.
I have yet to find a compelling use case, personally, for Facebook as something other than a Rolodex. Which is why LinkedIn seems redundant to me. I think my brain must be lacking some wires. I just don't get it. My wife does. But I don't.
You seem to be someone who does not feel a need to post your photos, videos, and daily statuses to share with others in your social circle. This is actually a good thing, especially when the endtime comes and all of these companies exploit the information that the rest of us are willingly putting on their servers.
I think there is a good chance of google resisting this since they can add the features through other (integrated) apps. Why have messaging when you have GMail? Why have events when you have Google Calendar? Etc...
It's interesting to watch but I wonder if it's a healthy practice. I don't see many high-performers quickly reacting to competitor's advances.
It signals a greater focus on what others are doing than what the customers need. HP added bling to their laptops, Apple did nothing.
Reading about the "Lockdowns" at Facebook in response to perceived emergencies in the market makes me feel like there's some knee-jerk reactions happening. Or at least this is how it looks from a distance, I am nowhere close to any of the players in the thick of it.
In the end someone who serves a need not currently being filled will win and they'll keep winning if they keep up with how the needs of the market are changing. That's what Facebook did to MySpace and that's what ACME CO will do to Facebook when they stop filling the needs of the market.
Call me crazy but this seems like a very good time to get into the fight.
My senses point to it. From my perspective it makes sense because you can't really point to it being a "serious" app that [serious] matured users would point to as a sense of belonging and we all know that Facebook users have no embarrassment at all when it comes to publicizing anything and everything they deem worthy in an effort to appear cool and belonging.
Yes they are talking about Java applets. However, the technology has improved (a large portion of windows users have a java quick launcher set to run on start up) and if it is anything like Facebook's original "Photo Uploader" (back before they integrated with phones and iPhoto and other apps, they had a Java app where you could browse and add photos. It would also scale/reduce quality of high megapixel photos that otherwise couldn't be uploaded to Facebook -- this was down client side through the app and was still relatively quick.) it won't be so bad.
TL;DR: Yes, it's a java applet. However, if its anything like how Facebook has done java applets in the browser, it will feel quick and lightweight on most systems.
>So in other words it's still slow but because of vendor pressure it's been lumped into "The OS" to hide that cost from the user?
I only used it on a Mac, before I discovered plugins that did Facebook integration for iPhoto (and later, that was baked in). And on OS X, no, it was not slow. I'm assuming it would be equally fast for windows.
Also, its not so much lumping the start up cost to "the OS" so much as "The OS Starting Up". How often do people reboot their machines nowadays? Once every six months? With that in mind, it's a pretty negligible trade off.
I listen a lot of music through Grooveshark.... I guess FB could implement something similar... I can see a future, where the average user lives permanently on FB listening music, chatting, stalking and who knows what...