Google APIs are well weak

first_imgWhen Google+ came into existence, it clearly ruffled some feathers. The landscape of the social networks was stagnant, as it had been for some time. Sure, lots of services were being invented to interact with the primary systems, but the truth of the matter is that if you didn’t like how things worked on Twitter or Facebook you could take your ball and you could go home.Google+ offered a different way to approach social networking, and users continue to flock to it. Facebook has been around for awhile, so it was pretty easy for the service to insulate itself by offering the same kinds of features that Google+ had shown us we wanted. Unfortunately, Google+ is still very young, and while we have been assured that new and amazing things are on the way, the truth is that the features are not there and in many ways the service feels limited. Hope rose up as Google released developer API’s for Google+, but a quick evaluation of those API’s reveal a sadder truth.Nothing newThe new Google+ APIs allow you to use Oauth2 authentication to request public posts from any user, and provide the data to you in a variety of languages for developers to play with. This is great if you want to grab posts from people’s feed to display in Times Square, or if CNN wants to show their audience what Google+ thinks about a topic like they do with Twitter, but really very little else. The API’s are read-only and just public posts, which as rumor has it is on the decline on Google+ anyway. This isn’t new, in fact many services have been scraping data from Google+ for their own purposes, which offers nearly the same functionality.Alternatively, it may be possible with this API to authorize users to a specific service. For example, how Turntable.fm requires a Facebook or the Sign in with Twitter feature. This has yet to be confirmed or tested, but at the very least this would offer some new and useful functionality.The impression it leavesThis feels an awful lot like Google pushing out something for the sake of pushing it out. Facebook has been dropping copycat features left and right over the last couple of days, mostly just adding the features that Google+ has made popular. This release feels like Google making noise for the sake of seeming competitive, without actually releasing something of substance.last_img read more

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