Sunday, August 14, 2011

Google Plus' Quora Quality

w2e alumni lunch 2Image by Eva Blue via FlickrOne of the first things I noted about Quora at the beginning of the year was that people I wished blogged but were not blogging were active on Quora. They were speaking. I am feeling the same way about Google Plus.

Look at this Hilary Mason post for example. Hilary is a big tech brain at Bitly, the URL shortening service. I think this woman has data for breakfast while the rest of us are still asleep. And she is a permanent fixture on the speaking circuit of the NY tech ecosystem. You go to some random event and there she is on a panel.

Did I Get An Email From Hilary Mason?

The discussion she has started has generated some intelligent comments. It is a robust discussion. This is not exactly Fred Wilson's comments section, but it is pretty good.

Go check it out.
Hilary Mason: I'm becoming more and more convinced that gmail killed innovation in email services...... I have a project that involves a volume of e-mail data that gmail can't accomodate, so I'm looking for alternatives. ...... It seems that gmail's free-ness and large amounts of storage at introduction basically killed off any independent competitors. ...... Are there other examples of technologies where the existence of one marquee product retards all potential competition? OS X? ..... I just want options, so I'm asking the question -- why are there no options?

Jesse Chan-Norris: If nothing else, gmail gave us a different way of thinking about email (conversations, tags).

Jesse Heady: Gmail certainly helped ruin my concept of a clean inbox. 2 gigs+? Ok, thanks. Why bother being organized or deleting anything?

Gavin McGovern: Innovation in provisioning not nearly as exciting as innovation in mail management perhaps? There are a bunch of mail services, plug-ins, etc. that do interesting number crunching, the Xobnis and the Mailranks of the world. Maybe that's where the thinking has gone?

Les Orchard: things like Gmail and Google and even have let me give up the idea of a clean / organized almost anything. Just pile everything into vaguely logical boxes, but don't worry too much about it. Try slapping some word-association metadata on things and lean on search to find stuff later.

Jurate Stanaityte: I suppose people at would be all ears about comments from you. Ever since zoho allowed IMAP I started a slow migration to their solution.

Jay Paroline: More upsetting to me is the death of email clients. Eudora was the pinnacle IMO; respectable memory usage even when mailboxes were gargantuan, super fast sorting and filtering, fast searching that could be as complex and specific as yo want, and the ability to alt-click on any field and have your messages instantly grouped by that. Sure gmail gives you the computing power of Google theoretically, but you still have to wait a few seconds for the network round trips every time you try to do something, and it still doesn't have all the functionality of a real desktop app.

Isabel Draves: Oh Hilary - the folks at Outlook cried when they saw your "why are there no options" comment.
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