Google Plus Week in Review: Updates

It was a busy week on G+ in terms of updates. Earlier in the week the released to a limited number of high volume hangout users a much needed moderation tool. With this tool,  the Hangout host can ” red box ” or block a hangout participant. This will prevent the blocked user from rejoining subsequent hangouts created by the same host. It is a nice tool to keep out any number of trolling G+ users that seem to enjoy disrupting hangouts.

That wasn’t the only update. The G+ team was on fire this week. Other added features include, Ripples which are a graphical representation of how posts are shared and reshared, What’s Hot which is a trending post mechanism.

Ripples

Yesterday was a busy day and people were testing the Ripples. To check a posts Ripples you can take this url https://plus.google.com/ripples/details?activityid= and amend a specific post id to it and it will show you graph like this; Ripples Graph

For high profile G+ users that have a ton of shares and reshares this is nice little tool to see the sprawl of their influence. I don’t know how beneficial it really it but neat interface nonetheless.

What’s Hot

What’s Hot is also a meter of some capacity that is a stream representation of what is currently popular in terms of posts. Under the Streams menu on the left there was What’s how where you can see the public posts that are currently Hot. Also i noticed that last night a What’s hot was integrated right into my stream when I had it set to all Circles.

These two items seem to benefit those who have been on G+ and understand it and are active engagers and therefore have a some G+ swagger and as a result have great chance of bigger Ripples and have posts appear in What’s Hot.

Where G+ and hangouts are heading is truly exciting. As a collaborative tool, Hangouts are groundbreaking, fresh and have significant benefit and appeal. Having the features they added this week are only enhancing their effectiveness further. I only hope that the Facebook Faithful start to give the G+ platform a chance. In the last 3 weeks I have been able to get about 20 friends to check out G+. Some have liked it others not so much. Only time will tell but one thing is sure. Google is being very hands on and proactive and for the most part listening to the community which is nice to see.

 

Can’t wait to see what awaits next week. Business and branding pages sure would be nice! This covers my Google Plus Week In Review Updates entry.

 

 

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Google Plus Hangouts: Are they Habit forming?

Google Plus Hangouts are both powerful and to me at least they are partially addicting. Since joining my first hangout nearly three weeks ago I have participated in over a dozen. Some have been with 9 other people and others have been one on one.

To those who didn’t read my earlier entry on hangouts and may not be familiar with what they are, here are the basics. A Google plus hangout is a video chat with up to 9 other Google+ users. The Google+  hangout interface is smooth and even when joining on from my Evo 4G, the video and sound is for the most part is solid. After hanging out with a number of different folks from varying background and walks of life, I have started to ask myself this question about Google Plus hangouts: Are they habit forming?

I say this as I tend to see the same folks on and hanging out when I check my hangout canopy or take a look at gphangouts.com. I recently asked a number of people in hangouts how many total google plus users actually participate in hangouts. The number that most see to say is about 1000.

Out of of that 1000 I have to suggest that most are highly active hangout participants. Even for me, since first hanging out I find myself seeking hangouts and meeting new people. Just this Saturday night, my wife and kids were out of town. Pre-Hangout me would have been behind my PS3 all night fragging people or on youtube looking for BJJ techniques on my iPad. Not this time. I was hanging out. In fact I was on a few different hangouts and ended up logging off at 1:15am. I had some great dialogue about G+, Hangouts, gaming and even a rubiks cube competition. I was enjoying a few beverages and quite possibly ended up being ” that guy ” and overdoing it but hey it is rare that I have the house to myself and the irish blood coursing through my veins may have got the the best of me on Saturday.

Being able to have engaging conversations and meet people that I otherwise would have never met is quite a rewarding experience. As G+ grows I think the scale and scope of hangouts will grow as well. I do believe at least for me hangouts could be habit forming and addictive. I gather others may feel the same why. If they are not than why do we tend to see the same folks hanging out?

I look forward to meeting more of you and extending my reach and as celebrities like will.i.am, Adrian Grenier, Felicia Day and more start to take advantage of hangouts to reach their fans, I think their popularity will grow more and more. By then I may need hangouts anonymous. ” Hi my name is Dan. I am addicted to G+ hangouts. ” My question is will be ironic to host Hangouts anonymous on Hangouts?

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