Late last week, I briefly gave Facebook Chat’s Jabber support a try, since there are still a few contacts on there that don’t regularly run another type of IM. As I altered the groups of some of the contacts, I noticed that Adium seemed to be trying to set it on the Google Talk account instead. It seemed a little confusing, but no ill effects.
Strangely today though, I started receiving bounces to my GMail account:
Subject: Delivery Status Notification (Delay)
This is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification
THIS IS A WARNING MESSAGE ONLY.
YOU DO NOT NEED TO RESEND YOUR MESSAGE.
Delivery to the following recipient has been delayed:
Message will be retried for 1 more day(s)
Technical details of temporary failure:
DNS Error: Could not contact DNS servers
—– Original message —–
Subject: Brett Porter wants to chat
Brett Porter wants to stay in better touch using some of Google’s coolest new products.
Er, I want to do what?
I’m not sure if this is Adium messing up and trying to subscribe my Facebook contacts via Google Talk, or something intrinsic to how Jabber works with multiple servers, but it seems strange that Google would send out that sort of request on my behalf in this way. On the GMail interface you need to click through a few times to try and invite someone to Chat. I’d be interested in figuring out what is going on here.
Regardless, I’d already found that having all my Facebook contacts in my IM client at once is not really something I need and disabled the account. Besides, it was becoming disconcerting to see how much time my contacts (that aren’t using it from their IM) spent logged in to Facebook through the day!
When I saw this panel, I just couldn’t resist…
I’ll certainly check out Chrome on Windows, though the key will be how it goes on a Mac for me. Today I use Safari because of the OS integration and speed, though I occasionally miss an extension or two that I will run Firefox for. Both Firefox and Safari will crash or hang from time to time (particularly on Google mail and calendar!), so if the browser can live up to its claims here it could be a winner. They’ve certainly set the bar of expectations pretty high, though, and I’ve been disappointed by Google’s native apps in the past – primarily Google desktop which while useful was not very stable for me.
One of the more compelling things from my perspective is the fact that it will be entirely open source (presumably from the comic this is going to be Apache License 2.0 – though I haven’t seen that stated anywhere yet).
From a user’s perspective, this seems to be more of the "best bits" of other browsers – as I browsed through I recognised features from Opera, Firefox, IE, Firefox, Opera,… having them all rolled into one browser without the other fluff is useful, but perhaps not compelling enough to switch on its own. Then again, Google will have the avenues to promote this to users well beyond any of the other browser vendors other than Microsoft.
This is certainly interesting… given the rumours have been around for years now, I wonder just how long they’ve actually been cooking this up.
I saw someone mention that they liked the new Google Reader, so I thought it might be time to give it another try. I didn’t like the initial version in comparison to Bloglines which I’ve been using for 3-4 years, but I’m definitely a fan of the new one and I think I’ll stick with it.
It suits my existing reading pattern – folder by folder. Though I don’t know if it supports the handy keyboard shortcuts that Bloglines does, the mark-as-read-on-scroll feature is very natural. It is probably that and the better appearance that have won me over. There are a bunch of other bells and whistles that I haven’t had time to investigate yet, but it certainly looks promising.
One thing that I can’t find yet is the availability of a blogroll feature like the one on this page – so I’ll be keeping my Bloglines subscriptions up to date for the time being for that (and in case I change my mind).
However, my favourite feature is something provided elsewhere – the Google Reader Notifier for Mac OS X. It has Growl notifications, menu bar integration and is very slick. Useful indeed – I highly recommend it.