Google is branching out in a unique direction today with the launch today of Schemer. Schemer is a service developed by a self-described “scrappy group of Google engineers who wanted to help people do fun stuff in the real world.” Though the service will undoubtedly have a social component - probably linked to Google+ - it does not appear to be a social network in the usual sense.
The goal of the project is to help people find and share activities of any and every kind. In a post on Schemer’s Google+ page, they list a variety of activities as examples. It’s a random assortment of “schemes,” ranging from the outdoorsy to the domestic to the random. There does not seem to be any limit on the kind of activity that can be shared. They also include a list of companies with whom Schemer has partnered to create activities “to help people get started.”
At present the service is still in beta, and cannot be joined without an invitation. It also appears to be focused on a small collection of major cities scattered across the country. When requesting an invite, users are asked to select their “home base.” Those not in one of the metropolitan areas listed must select one of two “Other” options depending on whether they reside inside the US or outside.
There is no word on how long Google plans to keep the service in beta. With luck they will move it out of beta faster than they did Google+, which nearly stayed closed too long, allowing the initial wave of interest to die down. In response to a request for comment a Google spokesperson directed me to the Google+ post linked above. The “About” page on the main Schemer site lists much of the same information as the Google+ page, and includes a video about the service.
We will continue to cover Schemer as more information becomes available about it.
What do you think of what Schemer so far? Will you sign up when it becomes available? Sound off in the comments.