I see that Google+ recently announced topic-based browsing. This is a good thing, but it only partially fixes half of the problem.
Google+ should allow posting authors to tag their posting with one or more topics. Furthermore, topic posters should be able to publish a small topic tree of the topics to which they post. Followers should then be allowed to view this tree and subscribe to different topics (channels) or branches. This way, followers who want to see photo posts but not programming posts would only see photo posts. The net result is that followers would have a higher density of interesting posts in their Home streams, and posters would not lose followers by posting content uninteresting to many of their followers.
With Google's NLP and Machine Learning talent, I would think that poster topic category trees could be computed from their historical posts, and that from View and +1 statistics, topics of interest to users/followers could also be computed (recommended to be precise). So, having people explicitly stating their postings' topics and followers the topics in which they are interested may very well be unnecessary.
Below are some half-baked preliminary ideas I posted in 2011. If topic trees and follower subscription to tree nodes were implemented, I'm not sure Circles would offer any benefits. And, the diagram below would be much simpler if the center Circles tree was eliminated.
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