Using Buzz

Posted on 2010-02-13 20:55

So for those of you who aren't using Buzz (yet?) and in an attempt to keep stuff I write about in one place, I gathered up some of the posts I've made on Buzz for this story. I don't know if I'll keep using Buzz or not, and if I don't I'd like to have a copy of this stuff somewhere. I use my personal website much like a Doogie Houser electronic journal while I use Facebook for sharing links and videos I find interesting, but how I might use Buzz is still kind of in flux. Things I write on my personal blog are automatically included as "notes" on Facebook, so folks I am connected to over there will be able to see the kind of things I've been posting over there. Since Buzz is integrated into gmail (where I spend a lot of time) and a lot less bloated with ads and other stupid app clutter, it seems to lend itself much better to serious conversations than facebook does so its possible that I'll want to figure out some kind of automated method to integrate those conversations happening on Buzz back into my own site (I like to archive stuff I write so I can reference it later). Sounds like RSS would be the perfect solution but of course Google doesn't make an RSS feed for my Buzz posts available... neither does Facebook - even though they both will happily use the technology themselves to suck in outside content.

The following posts are just my side of the conversation for posts I've made on Buzz since I started using it, to participate in the conversation fully - sign up and follow me there!

Feb 13 - So here's an annoying thing about Buzz which I didn't anticipate - there seems to be a lot of people out of nowhere following me for no obvious reason other than attempting to increase their own followers by appearing to give a crap about what I write. I don't use Twitter so maybe this is more like how twitter works than facebook, but frankly I have no desire to be "followed" by people with an obviously spam related business moniker instead of a name - e.g. @drivetraffictoyourwebsite is now following you! Will I spend as much time blocking these people as I did hiding facebook game posts?

Well, its been more than 1 second, but if you can find it at all then kudos to you. I remember reading all about the granularity controls (ala gWave) but don't see them in any obvious place now. Also found this article: http://www.businessinsider.com/googles-nice-improvements-to-buzz-dont-correct-major-privacy-flaw-2010-2 which points out that my full name was available in the Buzz search, along with all the people I followed and that followed me by default. This wasn't what I wanted, and is changed now. Also, if you decide to use the handy Buzz URL it will reveal your gmail address to the world.

HAHA - to post the above, I had to answer a question about my public profile (recently changed version) in which there was a checkbox as to whether I wanted to have those people Im following visible. I left it unchecked and hit OK. Then I checked my profile and my full name was searchable again!

Feb 13 - So a natural thing a Buzz user might want is a Buzz URL so that it might be used to direct folks to the user's Buzz "page". The help files state: "If you use Gmail, when you edit your profile, you'll have the option to display your Gmail username in your profile URL." but editing my profile I don't see any way to modify the URL at all. It just shows the default which includes my username (a giveaway to my gmail address) which I don't want public for obvious reasons. I'm starting to wonder if some functions of Buzz aren't available to me because I'm using Firefox?

[edit: clearly still a lot of bugs in Buzz. This is the second time I've made a post and an annoying window pops open asking me to confirm some details about my profile, which has only one option (to allow others to see my followers/followed). Leaving this unchecked, I proceed to click the save profile button only to find when editing my profile that another option "Display my full name so I can be found in search" which I wish to be left unchecked was once again checked. This seems to only happen on new posts]

Feb 13 - So here's an annoying thing about Buzz which I didn't anticipate - there seems to be a lot of people out of nowhere following me for no obvious reason other than attempting to increase their own followers by appearing to give a crap about what I write. I don't use Twitter so maybe this is more like how twitter works than facebook, but frankly I have no desire to be "followed" by people with an obviously spam related business moniker instead of a name - e.g. @drivetraffictoyourwebsite is now following you! Will I spend as much time blocking these people as I did hiding facebook game posts?

Feb 13 - The fact that I have no secret dealings or trysts that I need to hide from my family and friends is perhaps the main reason why it didn't occur to me that the Buzz launch was incredibly bungled from a privacy perspective.

Feb 12 - I don't have a cell phone. The main reason for this is the outrageous cost of the service, but also because I have never found a phone I'd actually want. I've played with the iPhone and I find it way too limiting, dumbed down almost, to say nothing of the crappy audio and AT&T service around here. I thought maybe that Android would lure me when the Motorola was released, but sadly it looks like a poor copy of the iPhone. At least its a real OS, but as this article points out, it's GUI seems to be hobbling it.

Feb 12 - I bought a stand alone Fostex because my MacBook supposedly can't do hardware playthrough so recording multi-track in Audacity would introduce a "delay" effectively making it impossible. I read a little on the Audacity forums and someone there suggested running the output of the Mac to an analog mixer (I have a Behringer) and routing that to the headphones separate from the main mix, but am a little confused about that. The goal here is to be able to work on an Audacity project with another person over the internet which means I want to know if there is a setup that makes multitracking possible in Audacity on the Mac. I suppose I could just dump the track to the Fostex, record on that and then dump it back to Audacity but am worried about being able to synchronise them.

How are others collaborating on audio/musical projects which involve multiple tracks?

Feb 11 - From a purely content creation perspective, Buzz is a problem. I have a website where I post longer stories, then Facebook where I've been posting short comments on videos or other interesting things I find on the web, but what do I use Buzz for? Seems like without all the facebook clutter (game, fan pages, stupid gifts) you could have more high level conversations here, more real collaboration. I like the integration with gmail because I basically live in gmail anyway. Trouble with all Google stuff is that not everybody does.

Google Docs is a good collaboration tool, perhaps I mean to say that you can have an open discussion and all subsequent comments are kept together nicely. In that way it is collaborative to some extent. The "following" aspect is like twitter - they're really taking pieces of FB and Twitter and combining

Feb 10 - Just got Buzz today and looking forward to checking it out. I was starting to think I couldn't have a conversation unless it was on Facebook.