Archive for June, 2011
My impressions after less than twenty-four hours of playing with the newly-launched (and still thus far fairly sparesly populated) Google Plus:
It’s not Facebook. I know that sounds simple and snarky, but I’m serious. I really, really don’t like Facebook, but I can’t deny how useful it’s been for keeping in touch with people, especially people who haven’t been an everyday part of my life for a long time. I don’t trust Facebook and I don’t like what they stand for. I’m on far friendlier terms with Google, and (whether I should or not), I trust them way more.
The interface is dead easy. Assigning people to your Circles is almost (gasp) fun. It’s so easy to create different Circles for the different types of people in your life that I’m actually having trouble deciding on the best strategy for partitioning my friends. Uploading and sharing pics? Easy, especially from my brand-new Android phone with the Google Plus app installed.
I love that Google Plus is not one website — it’s a combination of tools readily available throughtout the apps you already use. You can post from Gmail, from Google Calendar, from the main Google search results themselves, almost from wherever you’re already using Google. And most people, I’d wager, already use Google a lot. That sort of no-brainer accessibility might be the thing to really make this catch on.
I’m looking forward to getting more friends from more parts of my life onboard. Right now, most of the people I have on there are local friends, which isn’t surprising giving how geeky that batch of friends is. But one of Facebook’s big draws is that everybody is on there, and I can’t wait for the Google Plus population to explode. I think it’s coming; I don’t think they’re going to wait long before opening it up to everybody.
So far, It feels more conversational and interactive than Facebook does to me. And this might just be my particular group of friends using it, I’ll admit. I’m curious to see if that continues. I certainly hope it does.
If you’re in the “field test” already, what do you think of Google Plus? And if we’re not already connected on there, please feel free to add me to one of your Circles.
It’s the return of the Monday Mo(bile)Pho(to)! I miss doing the old Monday Photos I used to do back in the day, and since I have a camera with me every second of the day now and extraordinarily easy sharing technology, there’s no reason I shouldn’t get back into it. So I am. So there.
Those of you reading this via RSS or other forms of syndication may not realize that I’ve change domains. Or rather, changed back — I’ve repurposed the URL based on my real name and have gone back to using Do or Do Not as the name of this site. Using my real-name-as-domain-name never felt quite right to me; I only started using it in an attempt to start building the “brand” of my name, but ironically enough, it kind of alienated me from my own site. And I have bigger and better goals for this site now. So I wrote a brand new Mission Statement! Wanna hear it? Here it go!
I want to start this mission statement by defining what I don’t want this site to be: I don’t want it just to be a blog. I don’t want it simply to be a recording of my gut-level reaction to pop culture ephemera. I don’t want it to feel meaningless, either to my audience or to me, and I don’t want it to be something that doesn’t push me to improve myself as a writer, an artist, a programmer and a person.
I do want this site to be a repository for all of my various creative endeavors. After all, nothing really counts as being done until I put it online for praise from the masses, right? I can tell you right now this will not be a single-focus site. It’s more of a tour of my brain, and my brain can be a wide-reaching and messy place.
I do want to do write about a more diverse array of topics than I have traditionally: sure, the old standbys — movies, sports, comic books, TV shows, books, kids, music — those will all still have a place here, if something moves me enough to write it. But I also want to write about deeper topics, too. I want to push myself — I want to write about societal issues, about web development, about parenting, about anything that strikes me. Maybe even about politics if I’m feeling brave. (Yes, I know that nothing prevented me from writing about anything I wanted to before, but I was far more concerned about cultivating an audience than I was plumbing the depths of my own head.)
I want to post things that aren’t writing and feel confident in doing so. If I’m inspired, I should feel free to put artwork up, or graphic design, or even code samples, if it’s something I’m feeling strongly about.
I want to write short pieces. I want to write long pieces. I want to write multi-part pieces.
I want this site to grow beyond being simply a blog; I want to create projects that live here. I’m a web developer; I should develop some web stuff and put it out into the world. It’s what I do for a living, so I should be able to do it for fun, too.
I want to use this site as a way to learn new things, as a way to enhance and expand the skills I already have. I don’t want this site to be easy for me.
I want to help others. I want to write posts or create projects to help people, to inspire and motivate them. The name “Do or Do Not” doesn’t apply just to me — I want to get other people to Do, too.
Ultimately that’s what it’s all about – the Doing. The name “Do or Do Not” (and, of course, the famous quote from which it derives) has always spoken to me, and I’m sad now that I abandoned it for several years. In four simple words, in nine letters, it sums up a world of motivational speeches and inspirational techniques and ass-kicking and butt-chewing.
Do. Or do not.
I’m choosing to Do, and I’m hoping maybe I can get others to Do, too.