So yes. I am on Google+ and I can safely say that I am mildly liking it. It like a Facebook+Twitter mashup with Hangout thrown in for good measures. Here is my dissection of the Google+ UI and a features wishlist.
Let me tell you at the outset: I think the Facebook UI is beautiful. More beautiful than a full moon over a still lake.
1. A more seamless Gmail inside Google+ integration.
You have a great, and I mean that in every sense of the word, Google+ in Gmail integration. Its beautiful and very functional. How about a vice versa? And I think it will be a hit. Ask me why.
Here’s why: There is more action at G+ than at the good ol’ mail box. Or at least G+ has potentially more action than the mail box. I would like to spend all my time at G+ iff I also have access to my mails right there. We already have the chat there. Just do it for the mails too.
And when I say seamless, I don’t mean merely adding a tab for gmail(which is already there). It’s more than that. Maybe add a stream for mails just like you have for different circles? Allow me to reply to mails by posting comments on it? Go ahead, surprise me.
Google did not do this for wave and haven’t done this for G+. Why? Do I see a business conflict here? Two windows = more ads? Anyone?
2. A sea of whitespace != Brilliance
G+ has lots of whitespace. And I really mean a lot. It may resonate well with “The Google Philosophy” and clean UI etc. but I think it is leading to wastage of space. See the side effect mentioned in the above point. I come to a happening place such as G+ to see more than whitespace in lesser amount of time. Whitespaces are wasting my time.
3. Dimensions of a post and its aftereffects.
The length(Dimensionally) of a post changes depending on what you are sharing. For eg. Sharing a photo album vs a post showing a change in profile pictures are different in length dimensionally. I don’t know why but I just don’t like it. I think it’s a hangover from Orkut code base? I prefer the uniformity(more or less) in length of posts in FB. As an important side effect of this, if the first post on my wall(in FB parlance) is a photo album share then I can hardly see anything else on my wall without scrolling down. Don’t like it. I think it also has something to do with the size of the font. Take a cue from FB.
4. Ability to mute a person + more.
I need the ability to mute a person without having to delete them from my circles. And then maybe later I can Unmute them. As a bonus, I need a visible/easily accessible list of muted friends on the homepage.
Right now I can mute only a single post at a time.
Usecase: If a person is going on and on about a certain event or a subject, I need an instant ability to mute them and also I need to remember that I have muted them so that I can unmute.
5. Endless Scroll.
Good to have. Can do without.
6. This is a verified account.
Since you have gone the twitter way of expanding your circle, you will also need to tell me if a popular account is authentic or not. Just like twitter does.
More shall be added as the product is used. You can add yours.