It’s August 15 – a day celebrated by a billion people as something close to their heart. It is the day, the country of India got out of the hands of the British empire. It is the day, where Ahimsa and Gandhi conquered the entire world. For the people around the country, it is something that is more than just another celebration.
Google – in its traditions of celebrating major events with a doodle – has always come up with a great ones for the Indian national festivals such as the Independence day and the Republic day. The previous doodles of the Red fort, traditional kolam have created a lot of buzz and positive response from the country. It has created such an impact that a few (including me) wait till the midnight to see the Search engine’s way of celebration.
But this year Google gives us a complete shocker. After a series of awesome doodles for the London 2012 Olympics, expectations were huge on Google’s forthcoming doodles. This August 15, they have completely ignored the Greatest day of Indian history to praise an American chef and TV show anchor “Julia Child”
Today (Aug 15, 2012) is Child’s 100th Birth anniversary and there is definitely a reason to celebrate. But when we have a festival for a billion people (and a few thousands more in other countries), this should not have been the case. Google could have easily done with a separate doodle for India and the Child’s doodle for Rest of the World. They have did similar things in the past and should be an easy go one for them.
Instead Google went on to hide the Independence day of the country to celebrate the birthday of just a chef. This is something that I (or we) never expected from Google and they should offer an open apology to everyone of the country.
UPDATE: Google has changed the doodle around 0500 IST that puts up a beautiful peacock design and Indian flag colour
The much much awaited product of the Google+ ecosystem has finally arrived. Yes! Starting right now you can follow brands or “Google+ Pages”.
The Google+ pages logo
The G+ pages, for now, is half-baked. It neither offer good admin controls as Facebook does not it has the ability of a two way interaction. Fans or followers cannot post into the Page or even directly contact them in any means. But hours withing the launch Google’s product manager of the Google+ project, Dennis Troper posted to his G+ profile that every feature will be up very soon.
There are a lot of pages to follow right now and every one can create a new page as well.
And it seems Google+ is changing its logo too. The official Google+ page on G+ shows “g with +” in red background which is also the favicon of profiles and pages. But still the favicon of the homepage is the “+ in black button”
New logo of Google+
The one thing I love about Google is their creativity. And they have done it very well in making their pages. Google has used its scrapbook images to a greater extent in designing their pages. For example, Google’s official page have G as the profile picture and the remaining letter are in each photos each taken from a different doodle. Google Maps page the scrapbook photos combined to give a complete map.
Google's page on Google+
Here are a few Google pages to add to circles on Google+:
As we all know Google+ has launched its public API keys weeks ago. But till now we haven’t seen any good apps or integration with Google+ on any other site. Probably AOL owned about.me is the first service to offer such integration.
In its blog post launching the service about.me said
We’re pleased to announce our Google+ integration is here! As one of the first services with Google+ available, our entire team worked hard to design, develop, test and launch this brand new integration.
The design features your public posts as well as your public profile. Though the facebook design on about.me is better than the G+ thing, with the photo feed and recent friends feed, this integration is truly a forward step taken in the right direction, at least for the Google+ side. G+ will need a lot of such things to make sure that they exist in the competition.
Its a month old. Yet its a new born baby. That has been the story of Google+ so far. One can be pretty sure that Google is not just designing Google+, instead it is carving the social network to its best. But how long should we wait to see it in full shape? It has been one month since the launch of private field test, and now with the invites springing up in every corner, its possible for almost anyone to enter the zone. But there has been only minor appearance tune ups and there is no big announcements coming till now.. Why is Google taking so much time in introducing the new features. What are they waiting for?
The massive hit of Facebook also lies in their better integration with pages. And at the launch of Google+ everyone was looking forward for this feature. To the dissatisfaction of the brands, there is no pages still though Google still maintains that it is coming very soon. Though a few brands like mashable joined Google+ with a public profile, Google’s terms strictly says that only individuals can have a Google+ account as of now. And that too funky names are prohibited and only the user’s real name should be used.
Another upcoming feature of the Google+ is Games. Google is taking extra care in bringing out the games as this means a lot to them. Needless to say that Zynga will be the first partner of G+ in releasing the games feature, as Google invested a huge money in the popular facebook games producer. Games is one of the most attractive yet the most spammy feature of facebook. So Google has to hit the right tone to make it a success.
Its too odd to see a search feature not incorporated in the social network of the world’s leading search engine. But this is one feature where Google has no option but to be perfect. So it might take some time before they could develop, test, test and test again as long as they can before they implement the feature.
Custom Profile URLs:
The profile URL of a Google+ user (or just a Google Profile) has a numerous numerals in it which it too absurd to remember. Facebook had the same couple of years back and now they have realized to have the custom profile ids. The fear of Google is that these custom ids might leak out the email ids of the users. And leaving the email ids such open are a gift for the spammers. But still Google need to make an alternate to this feature. If you want a custom url even before Google gives you, try gplus.to
Google is known for rapid updates of its products such as Chrome, which hits version 14 while the all-time favorites Firefox is still at 6. But with Google+, they did not want to take any risk. They did not want even a single negative comment on their most ambitious project. Usually Apple is known for keeping things at the dark. Google tried the same with Google+ without leaving even a speck of doubt. And that went well in fact. G+ hit the right people at the right time. But taking too much of time to implement new features will leave the early adopters of Google+ to go back to Facebook. And this is something that Google would never want..
Still can’t find a way to get into Google+? Let me share you what i have got. Let me know who want to have an invite. I will send you an invite, as you cannot sign up directly trough the Google Plus page. Just drop in with your email id and i will send you an invite.
SMS : Its great that Google+ comes with SMS updates and SMS posts for India (considering that i’m addicted to FB SMS updates). But it doesn’t work for updates (or atleast from Docomo).
Web app: Though they have got a web app for Symbian mobiles, you can access these web apps only via the native browser. Which means NO Opera Mini, UC Browser and not even Ovi Browser (which will be the default browser in upcoming Nokia mobiles). Ofcourse, the web app works very well in the native browser, it is tough luck for those who don’t have the native browser. Most phones shipped now contain Opera Mini as the default.
Will update more as i explore the All new social network..