The Four Aarons of the Apocalypse (or maybe WCSF)

At WordCamp San Francisco last week, Aaron Jorbin suggested we pull together four Aarons for a photo.

Aaron Campbell, Aaron Brazell, Aaron Hockley, Aaron Jorbin at WordCamp San Francisco
(click for larger)

The Four Aarons of the Apocalpyse: Campbell, Brazell, Hockley, and Jorbin

Google+ Can’t Really Work for Events Yet

We’re now several weeks into Google+ and folks seem to be getting a handle on how they might use (or not use) the service. In addition to the usual tech early adopters, photographers have flocked to Google+ in droves. A few prominent photographers with strong online followings (such as Thomas Hawk and Trey Ratcliff) have championed the service as a great way to share photos and interact with the photography community. For these purposes, it works well.

On the other hand, the lack of an API, search functions, and/or robust mobile apps is preventing Google+ from being the answer in one big use case: events. Smart event attendees use Twitter to connect with other attendees, speakers, and staff. A hashtag is usually created for the event; anyone can follow along by using a search for the tag. These searches can be saved, and some applications allow for a search (or a list) to be used in lieu of the timeline view so that one can easily see the incoming items for the tag.

Given that my usage of Google+ shows that I could see it replacing Twitter, this is a roadblock.

Google+ simply won’t work at events right now for two reasons:

  • Lack of search – Without search, any sort of #hashtag is useless. One can’t even search for the event name. As noted above, this is likely the killer feature for Twitter at events.
  • No single-circle view on mobile apps – even if someone manually created a circle for the event, the mobile apps only show a combined “stream” view – there isn’t (at this point) a way to view only posts from a single circle.

I know many folks who were skeptical about the usefulness of Twitter until they used it at an event – it truly was one of the key use cases that helped the service gain traction. I hope that Google+ implements features soon allowing it to be used in a similar fashion. As it stands now, I’ll be heading to WordCamp San Francisco next week with around 1,000 other folks. Google+ won’t be of much use… back to Twitter we go.

I’d really like Google+ to succeed. I really don’t think I can continue to devote a lot of time to it unless it gets past some limitations quickly.

Other People Said Interesting Things: June 9th

As I wander the web I find interesting things. I share:

What have you seen lately that’s interesting?

Other People Said Interesting Things: June 6th

As I wander the web I find interesting things. I share:

  • Why OmniFocus?
    Evernote guru Brett Kelly explains why he uses OmniFocus for task management rather than keep his todo list in Evernote. Summary: use the tool that's most appropriate for the job.
  • Going Paper-Free for $220
    A system to automate going paper-free. Includes a scanner as well as a couple pieces of software.
  • Seal Teams
    Photographer Joe McNally shares a set of images he created while photographing the Navy SEAL "Hell Week" training. Great images; great story.
  • WordCamp San Francisco Call for Speakers
    I have yet to make it down to the biggest WordCamp, but if you're interested in speaking, they're looking…
  • Facebook comments should make Columbian.com friendlier
    The Columbian switches to Facebook-only comments. The article itself isn't too groundbreaking but it's interesting to read the first reactions in the comments.

What have you seen lately that’s interesting?