Friday, August 26, 2011

Excluding Circles in Stream

I feel as if I shouldn't even have to write this post. Perhaps hoping deep down inside that before I can even finish writing, Google will rollout a code update that will incorporate this new feature into the Circles integration with display of content in the Stream on the Google+ home page.

So...we've been using Google+ for a couple months now and we've seen some pretty rapid development. That's fantastic! It's probably the nature of things — the more we get, the more we seem to want. The higher the bar that Google clears, the higher still we raise it for the next jump.

With quite a few people in a total of 20 Circles, I've tried really hard to have the groups be meaningful to me so I can have 1-click access to filter my Stream and read just the pieces I want or need at any given point. But the way I've created my Circles, sometimes I want to read 2 or 3 or four Circles in my Stream at the same time OR sometimes I want to see most of my Circles, but exclude a specific few where there are lots of comments to the posts (some with 70, 80 or more comments). That really gets crazy - even now with collapsing comments.

I can write the spec for this, but I'm sure the engineers at Google have already considered this. How about giving users the ability to pull up their list of Circles on the home page and click the circle bullet that appears before the label. If it's filled in, then it means show the Circle in the post, if it's empty, don't show it. Or vice versa. Either way, some sort of Show/No option for each.

I know they want to keep the home page and navigation looking as good and clean and awesome as it currently does, but there also needs to be a nice balance between that and useability. The stream gets totally out of control when we can't filter it just the way we want/need to based on our real life Circle of contacts.

Anyone else have thoughts or comments on this?

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