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Just a simple girl from Kansas

Archive for the ‘Social Networks’ Category

Wanna FindLikeMinds?

Posted by Paula on April 2, 2008

I’m always looking for someone who is just as unusual as I am, so I was excited when I was asked to join a social site called FindLikeMinds started by a couple of guys, so I did. I played for a bit with it, even taking time between visits for any updates to the site to be made. I was excited to see the Zeitgeist page, but when you click a link, it tells you to click the Zeitgeist page first. So, it got me nowhere, I was thinking it would give me an option to add the same item to my list…. But, who knows what it was supposed to accomplish. I don’t see this being a terribly successful site because, at least how it is right now, you have to enter everything yourself. All of your influences, things you like, skills you have…. OH MY I have way too much and can’t think of half the stuff when I’m asked to make a list. Give me a list to choose from, with common items, yet with the opportunity to add more individualized answers, and yes, I would probably be the top user.

I want to apologize to Rob at FindLikeMinds for taking so long in writing this critique, but if he witnessed my discussion on jaanix, he would surely understand that I wanted to be sure about a few things before I was accused of completely missing the point of the site. So, Rob, if I did miss the point, please be kind in your comments, and I will be more than willing to help you work out some kinks to make it a more user friendly site! 🙂

This site is still in beta, so just leave a request if you want an invite to check it out for yourself!  😀


Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: | 4 Comments »

Don’t just read your feeds… Share them!

Posted by Paula on March 27, 2008

Toluu is a new social site where you share your feeds. I know, I had the same thought…. How the heck do you pronounce that? Well, Caleb was nice enough to answer this question: 2 (the number two) – Lou (as in ‘Skip to my Lou’) You can upload your OPML file, enter links manually, or add a bookmark that will automatically subscribe you to the feed on Toluu and your favorite (so long as it is in the top 10) feed reader.

I think that the one thing I like most about this site is that it tells you who you match up against. Of course, I have 2 that are at 100%, but that is only because they only have their own blogs loaded in their profiles. But, I have to admit that I was very impressed at 97% match that is listed for me. In order to protect myself from using names of people I do not know, I will not say who is my 97%, but that I had not previously befriended this person on any other site. I have seen this avatar and screen name on just about every site I spend any time on at all! So, I have decided to start secretly stalking this person some, to see if he or she might be someone I would really be friends with. Who knows, I may have found my social twin so to say!

The other really cool thing about this site is that you can see the blogs that others are reading. This is a great resource for someone new into learning about technology, social networking, or any other topic that your matches may read regularly! This may also be the way to find the next great blogger of our time! 🙂

The great guys at Toluu have given me a 7 invites, so if you haven’t secured your invite yet, you better be one of the first seven to ask me! 😉  Oh yes, and if you are already involved in Toluu, be sure to add me!

Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: , , , , | 16 Comments »

Checking back in on Jaanix

Posted by Paula on March 27, 2008

Well, it has been awhile since I blogged about jaanix, and I am also ashamed to say that I have not frequented the site quite so much, either. So, although my original intentions were to talk about another site or two I had checked out recently, I thought I should at least check back in with Joe at jaanix and see how he has been doing.

I have to tell you, I am quite impressed! The site seems to have grown massively beyond the young teen boy crowd! There is now a lot more geeky interest for people like me, who are fascinated by the social web!

I find it very interesting that the typical pages found on a website (about, FAQ, blog, and privacy) are not set up as you would find them in a different website, but each ‘subject’ is entered as a topic within the jaanix system. It is really rather clever, once you grow used to the site.

They have also minimized the tuner and have posted a teaser showing that you will soon be able to look at the web tuned by different individuals on the site.   This could be interesting!  😉

Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: | Comments Off on Checking back in on Jaanix

Check out and Vote for the Next Web Awards

Posted by Paula on March 16, 2008

The Next Web Awards are the European awards for future accomplishments! The categories are Entertainment, Company, Social, Web Celeb, Weblog, Rookie of the Year, and On Stage Startup.

I am excited to have found this site, not to vote for the nominees, but because I have heard of so few of the nominees, yet these are things that are making an impact in Europe.   So much more to look into!!

Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Check out and Vote for the Next Web Awards

Jaanix – A Closer Look

Posted by Paula on March 11, 2008

I’d like to start by thanking Joe Petviashvili for taking the time to explain his new website a bit deeper with me. To save Joe from having to repeat himself, I’ve decided to post what I have learned about his new website, jaanix, and share with you all what makes this new way of sharing the web superior to so many other sites out there.

Joe explained to me that he is trying to solve a problem that is not currently solved by other social bookmarking or social news sites. His goal is to combine methods currently being used to gather the news we see into one site. He believes that with a mathematical algorithm his site jaanix can be tuned into your needs. The algorithm looks at the levels of various topics you select and compares this with others who have similar tastes, sites they have added, ways they have voted. You may be thinking that this could be the same as checking out what your friends have done on Digg, but it is much deeper than what Digg or other sites currently offer.

Other social sites allow you to like a topic or not. Jaanix allows you to like a topic a little, quite a bit, or anything in between, your choices of topics are only limited by what you choose to submit to jaanix! The first stop when arriving at jaanix is on the right… you will find a variety of topics with sliders, or tuners (this is how you tune the web to your taste!). First thing I did was turned ‘off’ the topics that I have no interest in and turned the topics I like way up! Then, as you go through and vote on submissions and submit items you find yourself, the topics will adjust to fit your tastes, as will the websites shown.

One thing that I certainly want to stress about jaanix is that it is not a cliquish voting site, as I had originally thought. The voting is purely for your own personal benefit. By voting for sites that you genuinely like, or voting down for sites you do not like, you are teaching the site to know what you want to see more of in the future.


Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: | 5 Comments »

Apologies to Jaanix founder, Joe P. …

Posted by Paula on March 6, 2008

Am I really doing this is the first thing going through my mind… Well, yes I suppose I am. As with everything I do in life, I do want to be fair. It seems my post from yesterday annoyed Mr. P. a bit, because I incorrectly called his new site, jaanix, a voting site. Yes, although you do vote for different sites here, that is not the point of the site. The point of the site is to “tune your view of the world”.

I have now played with this site for about the past hour and I’m sorry, I still don’t get it. Here is the list of topics that you can slide to get more or less of a subject: humor, jaanix, xkcd, social, search, design, google, del.icio.us, weird, youtube, photography, web, blog, math, development, internet, webcomic, comic, tools, language, science, funny, rss, code, news, web2.0, and video. I hope I am not the only one who sees the recurring theme here, but I won’t even hold that against the site and will jump head first into the Google category – that shouldn’t be hard, right?

Along with being able to slide among the different topics listed, you can also click on any topic, again, I am choosing Google. The first item I am seeing this morning, ironically, is a submission I have recently made. It does have to do with Google, so far so good.

jaanix - Google

Click on the image to see the full sized screen capture. The first three items, as well as item number six could all fall under the topic “Google”. In fact, one is even tagged Yahoo, but as Yahoo and Google are in competition, I will give that the benefit of the doubt and not discount that item. The fourth item on this page is tagged cheerleading, wrestling, and soccer. The fifth item is tagged math, funny, and comic. I do not see where either of these fit in with Google.

I honestly had no intentions of saying anything negative about this site. I just wanted to go back and give it another chance, because Mr. P. seemed to feel that I did not look closely enough at his site. After looking closer at this site, I would not call it a voting site and I most certainly correct myself for saying that it was such a site. I have seen other sites refer to jaanix as a social bookmarking site. I can mostly agree with this description, but I’d like to add that it appears to be a social bookmarking site targeted for teenage boys. Seems that they really like humor and comics here at jaanix. My step son should really enjoy this site! 🙂

So that no one is limited to just my opinion on this site, I’d like to offer the following links of other views on jaanix:

As you can see by visiting the links above, it seems that my dislike of jaanix is not a popular view. Joe, I sincerely hope you do not take it personal that one woman in her mid 30s does not like your site! 🙂

Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: , | 7 Comments »

Social Aggregators – So many to choose from!

Posted by Paula on March 3, 2008

In January I was busy playing away with the private beta, Lifestrea.ms. Although a great concept, it is a mighty quirky site. In fact, I still haven’t figured it out! So, I have searched a bit more at the different aggregators out there, some are in beta, some have become recently released, and some can just be used as an aggregator but probably aren’t meant to be!!

Jaiku is currently still in invite beta only. I just checked and I have 10 invites available if anyone is interested. Jaiku is an aggregator that is also a bit Twitter-like and has groups that you can join. The groups look like they could be a great thing that sets Jaiku apart, but from the ones that I had interest in, all that the group consists of is a place where a bunch of people can sign up for an RSS feed of whatever the group creator has chosen. Yes, you can talk within the group, but it was not that common in the areas I was interested in. I even noticed that group creators seemed to have ‘spammed’ the good ideas of what could be groups by including their irrelevant RSS feeds for the members to receive.

Tumblr isn’t really a social site aggregator, but can be used as one. From what I’ve seen, I believe that Tumblr is supposed to be like a blogging platform, but you can plug in up to 5 different feeds (without having to bend over backwards for the Tumblr Gods). For blogging, there is no place to leave comments, so this is good if you just want people to be able to follow whatever topic you are covering. Of course, my topic is me! 🙂

And the last one I will talk about today is FriendFeed which has recently come out of beta and is my favorite social feed aggregator at this time. (You know a woman always has the right to change her mind later! 😉 ) Among the many different reasons to love FriendFeed is that you can add feeds directly from 27 different sites, plus your own RSS feeds from your blogs. You can go through and add friends the old fashioned way, or, if you are unable to find your friend in FriendFeed, you can make an imaginary account where you can add the feeds you want to track. You can add your imaginary friend’s Digg account, Twitter account, and many others and feel as though they are right there with you! This is so you can still keep up without having to send out yet another invitation to your friends who are probably close to having you committed for joining all of these crazy sites! 🙂 Another neat function of FriendFeed is that you can ‘Like’ a Tweet, Digg, or post of other users on FriendFeed. You can also leave comments on the various posts. You don’t have to be friends with someone to like what they posted or to leave a comment about it. This is truly a social site for social networking.

I know there are several other aggregators out there…. I’d love to hear which ones you like!

Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

Vote in the Webware 100 Awards for 2008

Posted by Paula on February 26, 2008

For those of you who follow me on Pownce, you already got a note saying to go and vote for your favorite Web 2.0 sites. For those of you who don’t follow me, be sure to head over to CNET’s Webware site to cast your votes in 10 different categories! The great part is, if you have more than one favorite, you can submit 3 votes for each category!

I voted!

Not to give away all of my secrets, but I did vote for Firefox, iGoogle, BlogTalkRadio, Twitter, WordPress, Mahalo, OpenID, StumbleUpon, and a few others.

Posted in Social Networks | Tagged: , | 5 Comments »

Mahalo: A Social, Human Powered Search Engine

Posted by Paula on February 25, 2008

When I was first introduced to Mahalo, I must admit, I was not very … excited about this idea. A site where people recommend other websites. Yes, there is a protocol, not every site will be accepted. In fact, so far, I’ve had 4 sites declined by Mahalo. One was because I put it under ‘Surfing’ and I was thinking web surfing, not water surfing! If there are more ads than content, the site will not be accepted. If there is not a clear way to get a hold of the website owner, it will not be accepted. This is a search engine providing quality results. Sometimes, especially when writing that research paper, we only want the quality results. Sometimes, we don’t and we can continue on with Google or your favorite search engine.

A couple of months ago, Mahalo introduced Mahalo Follow. Although I did check it out when it first came out, I was not swayed to download it until about a month ago. Since downloading Mahalo Follow, I have found that it is simply something I cannot live without. You must know that it has to be good if a social junkie like myself is all excited about it!

When you find a page you would like to recommend to Mahalo, you simply click the Yes button on the tool bar and a screen will pop up for you to enter the search term that would be used to find such a page. Start typing and it will give you suggestions. Next you want to enter your tags separated by commas. Only drawback here, make sure you also keep them to one word tags or your del.icio.us bookmarks will become a mess! Enter a brief description or what you would like to use to share this link with everyone.

It is this next part that makes this tool bar the greatest tool bar ever! You then have the power to send this link and your brief description to up to 10 different social sites! The sites currently accessible are Twitter, Jaiku, Faves, Ma.gnolia, del.icio.us, Google Bookmarks, StumbleUpon, Facebook, Pownce, or your Tumblr blog.

Well, to get these links, I just signed up for Tumblr!  🙂  I tried Jaiku, but it still isn’t out of invites only.  I guess I didn’t realize what Tumblr was, because I had no idea it could take everything like this!  I’m looking forward to playing with this one, but that will have to be another day…

Hope everyone has a GREAT Monday!

Posted in Bookmarks, Social Networks | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Social Networking – A Personal History Part II

Posted by Paula on February 14, 2008

I am hoping that with the previous post, everyone realizes this is a play on the new phrase ‘social networking’. I’ve had a lot more people pass through here since my last post, so I just thought I should clarify…

I had planned on getting this written over the weekend, but as I’m sure many who may also have a full-time job that isn’t blogging as well as a full-time family 😉 might realize – sometimes life gets in the way of things we want to do! The delay did allow me some time to do some thinking about what I would write next. In fact, I almost gave up sleep last night to get started, but my body overruled me on that idea!

My next bit of personal history in what could be called social networking is truly rather comical, but at the time was absolutely mortifying. To give some history leading up to this experience, I had already joined 43 Things and had even started my first blog on Yahoo 360. I did have a link to my Yahoo 360, but after searching for the photo below, I decided to remove it. My contacts on my Yahoo 360 page are friends that I went to high school with and we all have a very warped sense of humor.


So we have all gotten those email jokes that people forward around. Sometimes it may even be an informational email about someone’s life or a virus alert. If you ever receive an email like this from me, you will see that I will usually send it to myself and then blind copy others into the email. The looping image shown above is exactly why I now follow this protocol. I had sent out an email with this image because I found it so very humorous! My mother replied – to everyone – “Now that is what I call getting b*tch slapped!”

The moral of this story is if you are one who sends out group emails, be 100% certain that you are prepared for any consequences that may arise with people having access to your other contacts.  If you are not careful, it could put you into a social networking disaster!

I have now covered two of the original social networking tools: chat and email.  The third and final part of my social networking history will deal with forums.

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