The other product (actually they call it a "project") is Google+. Simple name, exciting project. I would call it a Facebook-killer, but I won't do so until everybody's doing so too. You can read more about it at TechCrunch, Mashable and Google itself. It's obvious goal is for sure to make Google and its products social. Also, Google would take a deep breath if it could beat Facebook. ;)
However, the real goal of Google+, as I see it, is to help Google deal with the incoming zettabytes of data yearly. How? If you +1'd something, it's very likely to be relevant content. For example it's very likely you +1 a brand, something you bought, or an article you read, but you won't +1 content farms, do you? So everything that got +1 before is a lot more likely to be what you're searching for, than something nobody +1'd before.
Now to the real story: What's behind the scenes of Google+? Well, I don't know what powers Google+. Sorry. Unfortunately I'm not a Google employee (yet?), but I'll try to change that after graduating from university in a few years.
Here's what I hope powers Google+...
- Huddle - Google Talk (or Google's "Disco"?)
- Hangout - Google Talk
- Circles - Google Contacts
- Sparks - +1-button
- Photo upload + editing - Picasa + Picnik
- Stream - TechCrunch told us it's not Buzz