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Google Buzz…I Don't Think So.

When I logged on to my Gmail account today, instead of being taken directly to my inbox, I was shown an invitation to start using Google Buzz. I immediately ignored this and went to my inbox, but after checking my mail I decided to do some reading into what exactly this new Google application was.gmailfailwhale

Apparently Google is trying to enter into the social networking scene. Now, Google is good at just about everything it does. Gmail, Google Chrome, Google Maps, etc. The list goes on and on. Not to mention the fact that it is the number one search engine on the entire Internet. However, I just don’t see them being able to erode the monopoly that Facebook and Myspace’s have on social networking in today’s world.

Google Buzz is basically a way to link Gmail with different programs such as Twitter, Flickr and other social networking and media tools. This might seem like a good idea on paper, but when you add things such as status updates and media sharing, it just seems like yet another attempt to do what Facebook does best. On top of that, Google is trying to make social networking more open and public and wants to link this information into search engines so that it is more accessible to others on the web.

Almost everyone has a Facebook and loves using it, so why would anyone want to start their social life from scratch on some new program that barely has any users? And when you take away the privacy that Facebook offers, it makes Google Buzz even more unattractive. People like comfort, and Facebook is what people are comfortable with when it comes to social networking. Google can try and make this popular, but my guess is that most people are going to do what I did and completely ignore the invitation to try yet another Facebook or Myspace.

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Want to publish your own book?

Blurb is a fairly new web 2.0 site that allows you to create and publish your own book.  You are able to select the size of the book, hardcover or softcover, as well as color or black and white.

Each book is priced depending on the size of the page and the number of pages.  You are able to create a black and white 5″ x 8″ softcover book for as little as $4.95 + shipping.  Prices can get expensive very quickly, as a 13″ x 11″Hardcover book starts at $54.95.

I feel that Blurb is a special web 2.0 site because users have the capability to make money off of selling books.  It promotes creativity and is perfect for photographers who are looking to make a more professional looking portfolio.  Beginning writers are able to cheaply create books to help get their name out in the world.

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YouTube: One Big Nerdy Group-Hug



YouTube, digg, stumbleupon: what do they all have in common? They need team players to use them. What team you ask? I’ll call it “Team Internet.” I still remember vividly my coach screaming that we were a team. “Work as one, win as one” **Cough Lose as One**. There were always those few slackers on the team who never gave it their all, and often I fell into that category. However, little has changed, and I am a freeloader on Team Internet.

So where’s this going you may ask? How does being on a team deal with YouTube? What on earth is Team Internet? Everyone knows the 5 star rating system. Hotels, cars, girls, and videos are all put to the test of the 5 or 10 star system. This system however is inherently based upon the teamwork within team internet. Without working together, none of the above websites would still exist. So the question remains: why am I so lazy and such a freeloader that I have never ever ever rated a youtube video after watching. After all, I sort my videos by highest rated, and that means I am taking advantage of the system which I have a semi-obligation to as a Web 2.0 Team-member. But even greater than the question of why I have never rated a video is the question of why anyone else actually does it.

There is some sort of team mentality, collaboration, nerdy group-hug thing going on that I cannot wrap my head around. What obligation does anyone have to YouTube? Why do we give it our time and play its game? Maybe I’m a selfish freeloader, using and abusing the system I am dependent on, but I still fall asleep once a year with these questions running through my head.


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Just Kidding

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That's My Mouse!

This is an incredibly neat little widget I stumbled across today. It's only been live for about a month now so I figured it was worth a little write-up.

"ThatsMyMouse" is a tool that allows users on your site to see not just their own cursors, but the location of anyone else's cursor who happens to be browsing the site simultaneously! Users have the option of enabling or disabling ThatsMyMouse and are even able to chat with other users on the page via a little chat window and little word bubbles that appear above their cursor's marker. If a users cursor does not move for a certain amount of time the user will be designated as idle and the marker will show a little "zzzz." The novelty of it all is certainly fun. You can check it out for yourself with a little demo here:

ThatsMyMouse Demo

I'm not really sure if this is actually something that will catch on. It brings to mind visions of popular sites cluttered with cursor markers, and I'm not sure how this would effect a sites performance. Of course there is always the option to turn it off, so if you don't want to see those cluttering markers you don't have too…

Something like this could perhaps have place if integrated with a network like digg or stumble upon. Sort of a "real time tagging" sort of thing. I'm interested how you guys think this will fit into the web 2.0 trend, so throw out some comments if you've got an idea!

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The Offices of Web 2.0

Here is a really cool photoblog of the workspaces of some of the big players in web 2.0 The blog also gives a brief view into what each one does. Linked in office

  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • Twitter
  • Craigslist
  • Mozilla
  • Joost
  • Flickr
  • jaiku
  • LinkedIn
  • Reddit
  • netvibes
LinkedIn workspace

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