Thursday, May 15, 2008

Scobleizer — Tech geek blogger » Blog Archive Did Andreessen miss the point of Google’s Friend Connect? «

Ning would be better for a small group, condo association, church group, fan club. Everything you need in 5 minutes, and spend the next 5 years customizing. If it gets big enough you can even get a domain name and stay with Ning for the infrastructure.

Google lately has been introducing several new goodies every week. Sometimes blockbusters like this, other times just a new map overlay or something. They may not be as nimble as they once were, but they are running circles around Microsoft, Facebook, Yahoo and the other established players (no, Facebook shouldn’t be lumped in with the older walled-garden crowd age-wise, except that is the way they are acting).

Still, some of the new Google stuff doesn’t always lend itself to novice use. Much of this latest round requires that you be able to cut-and-paste code snippets into parts of your web presentation that you don’t have easy access to unless you own your own servers. Ironically you can’t easily use some of this stuff if you are also a user of Google pages. They aren’t stopping to make sure that everything works seamlessly together. Conceptually Google is re-implementing for the web the same overlapping bloated wasteland that Windows/Office has become. The difference is, that as a user, I only pick and choose the components that interest me. The rest don’t fill up my hard drive or constantly ding my CPU for cycles or present targets for viruses (at least not the type I have to worry about).

I guess somewhere at Microsoft they are webifying Word and Excel and at Facebook they have decided to let their captive chat users connect with AIM and Jabber (what a concept! What next? E-mail?) While MS and Facebook play chess with their features, the Nings and Googles are playing Tetris, spitting out new features as fast as possible and letting users figure out how to pack them together.

It’s a much better model for development, don’t you think?

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