Hi Will - Decided to just drop my post inside your post, as a comment.
I'll tweet you also. Bye !
ALL three major social networks (G+,FB, TT) are missing a HUGE IDEA -
-- crowdsoursing datasets, crowdsourcing software.
We need "super-circles" to draw-down from and create our individual circles.
Circles are semantic objects of identity or knowledge -
-- why are we all working ALONE creating our circles?
G+, please relieve me of creating the following circles: (and many others)
1) China experts
2) China geeks
3) friends who live in Beijing
4) friends who live in Shanghai
6) Tech journalists
How many of us are making a "tech journalist" circle?
Thousands of us should be crowdsourcing a large PUBLIC circle about these easy groupings, and then allow each individual to "feather" their individual VIEW of that larger public circle, by adding/blocking people.
Additionally, we should be able to +/- which super-curators of the larger public circles we prefer, so each person's INDIVIDUAL view of the large cycle would be curated differently. By relying on people to build "large public circles", and by relying on curators to "feather the view" - much of the CIRCLE nonsense would go away.
Each person could just start with two circles - Family and Friends.
Beyond those two crucuial starter circles, people could "cull from" and "feather" from larger public circles.
(think Sulia.com from the Twitter ecosystem.)
People with talent in curation could specialize in "circle curation".
Individual could choose favorite curator(s) to cull from public super-circles.
Essentially what Google is asking 100 million people to do is CRAZY.
We're supposed to "define" 100 million people, each of us trudging through that nightmare ALONE ?
Leave it to G+, FB, TT to forget the most important thing about circle building - "utilizing the power of us".
Each company's hubris about "owning" the social graph data", or its egocentric way of software design (we don't need people's input) ... has precluded ALL 3 major companies from cracking this core problem.
Every major headache in group diagram semantics will be solved in this way, and it's high time our "top" social software companies got their damn act together.
Similarly, Google Translate could crack ALL language translation.
Just let 1 billion people ADD translations, and let 1 billion vote+/- on the translations. New jargon would be defined in minutes.
In 4-5 months, we'd have a perfect AI language engine.
But alas, Google is trying to " own" language, rather than having "people build language collaboratively".
People especially talented in language translations would become language "curators".
In turn, curators would also be scrutinized by +/- voted up and down, and the excellent translators sorted out.
People (users) could even "choose" which translators to overlay language to customize their language stream.
I could go on and on - bottom line, our top companies do not "crowdsource" well at all.
They all think of software as ---
doing "internal code" ... "written by our employees only" ... rather than a collaboration.
This greatly restricts innovation.
It's painful to see near-zero Silicon Valley innovation in circle semantics.