Big UI Change on Google Plus today

So I get into the office this morning, check emails, hop on Google Plus and I am like,” WTF???”
Vic Gundotra announced at 9:42am this morning that there has been a big UI Change on Google Plus today. It is slowly rolling out. At first I didn’t like it, after about 20 minutes I had warmed up to it.

I will go into detail on a subsequent post but I wanted to share the official video. I was happy to make an appearance in albeit as small one. 😉 Look for my avatar at the :45 mark.



Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Google Plus Hangouts

So for a few months now I have been holding Hangouts during an intro to BJJ class at Simmler BJJ/Worcester MMA. I thought it would be a great way to use hangouts to show people that maybe have considered BJJ but haven’t taken the leap to actually do an intro course. I have been doing about 1 a week, usually on Wednesday evenings.

Some of the hangouts have been very well attended, say 30 people or so dropping through over the course of the class ( usually an hour and fifteen minutes) and other have only had 2 or 3 people come through.

People tend to hear Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and think Karate or Tae Kwon Do with kicks and strikes. I often find myself telling them that is a grappling martial art and as such there are no strikes.

Using Google Plus hangouts to raise awareness and demonstrate some basic techniques is new way to use the technology that excites me.

Just recently we had a team mate that wasn’t able to make it in to classes as he had a newborn at home and his bandwidth was at a minimum for the first few weeks. He hit me up on Facebook and asked when and if I would be doing the BJJ hangout. I told him I wa planning on holding ont that night. He was excited and told me to invite him when it started. That night from the comfort of his couch he was able to watch the class and hear and see the techniques we covered.

Right now, I am struggling with getting the camera closer to the action on the mat when our coach is demonstrating the technique. I tried using my EVO 4G and logging in under different account to use as a second camera to get right on top of the action. However, this proved to be a laggy, jumpy mess.

I am currently seeking a good solution so we can better broadcast the techniques when needed. I think that having a two camera set up that is stable will be the best way. I think in the next week or so I am going to try getting a usb extender and try to have a C910 that I can use to get close to the action.

If that works, George Sepich who has Hangouts On Air has been kind enough to host an On Air hangout of our class. I think that will be a great opportunity to leverage the power of hangouts to broaden awareness of both Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Simmler BJJ/Worcester MMA where I have trained for over two years now.

Onward and Upward!


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