I’ve made my skepticism of Buzz clear. ReadWriteWeb points out one star in the constellation around Buzz’s launch about which I am more optimistic: WebFinger. Yes, it is intentionally a reference to the finger command and the identd service from Unix. The details so far are clearly aimed at developers. It remains to be seen what services and applications will crop up around Google’s pushing of parseable profile and social graph data with email addresses.
The potential that has me hesitantly excited is that looking through the kinds of data that can be queried via WebFinger, it seems like the best recent attempt to crack the profile fatigue I’ve come to associate with new social services. If I can establish my profile one last time on a WebFinger capable site, like gmail, then maybe, just maybe the next registration prompt I get slapped with can be satisfied by just giving it my gmail address and authorizing what data can be shared.