Timely and insightful analysis from hypertext pioneer Greg Lloyd; check the post link below for more details. A couple observations, relative to Greg’s thesis: 1) Google+ isn’t fully baked, at this point; Google has been clear that Google+ is not even at beta status yet; 2) Google will likely integrate Google+ with Google Sites (and perhaps also Google Groups), and that approach -- extending Google+ with a true workspace-based model (or two, although Google Groups are more messaging-centric than workspace-centric…), rather than trying to morph circles into hybrid spaces -- is likely to be more productive.
Like many people in the tech industry, I've been happily exploring and enjoying Google+ for the past week or so (thank you Susan Scrupski for the early invitation). I like the Google+ bar, polished integration with Google Profiles, Photos, and Video, as well as the new Huddle and Hangout capabilities. And I'm looking forward to Google+ integrated Search.
Google's Circle model was carefully designed, with a wonderfully polished interface for adding folk to Circles and creating new Circles. Google is encouraging active discussion, feedback and suggestions on how Google+ should evolve. That said, I've also followed more than a few Google+ discussions in which people get confused by what the current Circle model is versus what the word "Circle" means to them.
I think it's easiest to understand the Circle model by comparing it directly to email lists. This post illustrates that analogy, with my analysis of the Circle model's strengths and weaknesses, and how it might evolve.