I’ve briefly tried Google Shared Stuff, and here are my first impressions. I’m one of those horrible people who always see what the problems are instead of what’s good, so I’ll just say as a preamble to the few gripes I’m raising here that overall, it looks neat, shiny, and it works roughly as it should.
- nice: I can choose photos from various sources
- not so nice: “The photo you specify here will be used across all Google products and services which display your public photo, including Google Talk and Gmail.”
I already have a photo in my Gmail/Google Talk profile. Why can’t you use it? If I upload a photo here, is it going to overwrite it? Need more info, folks.
Private vs. Public
This is my shared stuff:
Shared stuff can be public or private. Above is the page as I, the account owner see it. Below is the page that the public sees:
See the missing link? (Not difficult, there are only two in total.) “Hah, you’ll say, you made the second link private! That’s why the public can’t see it!” Try again:
The link was shared as “public”. This is obviously broken in some way, folks. Please fix it.
The bookmarklet is nice, but nothing revolutionary:
What about the sharing pane? It looks very much like the del.icio.us sharing pane, but more cluttered. The nice thing is that it lets you choose a photo to illustrate your share (like FaceBook does, for example):
Besides being less cluttered, the del.icio.us pane has a huge advantage over the Google one: it’s a resizable window. Really really appreciated when a link you clicked (or a page opened by Skitch) uses that window for the new tab.
One interesting feature of this sharing pane is that it allows you to share to other social bookmarking services — not just Google’s. That’s nice. Open. No lock-in. But… isn’t it a bit pointless when I can access the del.icio.us bookmarking pane in just one click instead of three?
What I Wish For
I’d like a one-click bookmarklet which works exactly like the “Share” button in Google Reader:
Clicking the “Share” button adds the post to the stream of my Shared Items page/feed. Painless. I can easily add them to my sidebar:
However, now that I’m using the Google Reader “Next” bookmarklet more, I find that I’m in Google Reader less, so something like a “Share Bookmarklet” (Google Reader-style) would come in really handy.
The main point here is that to share something in Google Reader, I click once. With Shared Stuff or del.icio.us, I click at least twice.
Holes in Buckets!
So here we are. Again. Make all this stuff communicate, will ya? When I share stuff in Google Reader, I’d love it to be pushed to my del.icio.us account automatically, with a preset tag or tags (“shareditem” for example). It annoys me to have links I’ve saved in del.icio.us and in Shared Items (Google Reader). It’s not as bad as it was when you couldn’t search Google Reader, but still.
Am I going to add yet another list of “shared stuff” to my online ecosystem? That’s the question. Make that bookmarklet share to Google Reader Shared Items, and let me push all that to del.icio.us, and you’ll really have something that adds value for me.
Otherwise, I’m not sure where Shared Stuff will fit in my social bookmarking life.