le 11 mai 2012
When Google came out with Google+ almost a year ago I was very skeptical of this yet another attempt by Google to break into social networking. I was one of the early (and very active) users of Google's 'other' social network (Orkut ' the network that dares not speak its name), and I had dabbled into Buzz, but I had either completely abandoned using them years ago or was using them so infrequently that they might not exist at all. However, Google+ turned out to be quite a different animal. Its clean, functional interface, its non-creepy and versatile way of organizing your social life around 'circles,' all convinced me and millions of others that Google+ is a worthy foray by the Internet giant into the social space.
The virtues of Google+ are the same ones that have marked most of the successful Google products over the years. It is a very clean, intuitive site, and yet it's powerful enough to satisfy most users social networking needs. However, like many other apparently intuitive products Google+ hides a lot of underlying complexity. 'Google+ Companion' is a very well written and intuitive book that will help all users make the most out of Google+. It is written primarily with the beginning users in mind, but there is enough information even for the advanced users in it. (I for one had finally figured out how to quickly remove people form my circles.) Topics covered include 'What are circles and how do I use them?', 'How do I manage Google+ settings?', 'How do I manage my privacy and personal information?', 'How do I use Google+ to promote my business?', and many others. Many of the topics are covered in the intuitive step-by-step way, but there is also a lot of interesting and useful background material. The book is printed on nice high-quality paper, and all illustrations and pictures are in color. A fair amount of the information in this book can be found online (by, of course, Googling it), but I often find that having a physical book on my desk can greatly help me get the information quickly and efficiently. Furthermore, Google keeps changing many aspects of Google+ fairly often, so the chances are that many parts of this book may become obsolete in the near future. However, from my experience with other social networks I suspect that the basic core features are a bit more robust, so this book will probably remain relevant for some time.