Google’s latest push into the social network arena is different than their previous attempts. It wants to take on one of the problems social networking has had from the beginning. The fact that you don’t want to share everything with everybody and you don’t want to constantly make lists of friends to share certain things with. That’s a good place to start.
Google’s new Circles service seems to take care of this problem by making those lists easy. Hangout can be seen as an always on video conference that you or your friends can join. Sparks is a service that aims to deliver fresh content on certain subjects like an RSS reader that you don’t have to set up. We will know in time how well people like it, but Google seems to have done a better job this time.