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Tag Archives: socialnetworking

The Viral Me starts off like a generic beginner’s guide to Web 2.0 on the web, and I was set to disregard it as a fluff piece, but it gets quite compelling and deep at the end.

By the middle of the article, it starts discussing your public profile on the internet. I share the same view and have long practiced it. I don’t try and hide myself on the internet using a variety of privacy filters and permissions. Instead I publish a lot about myself to everyone in the world! I do consciously filter what I publish to make sure that I am aware of what I’m revealing and that everyone isn’t aware of the truly private information.

The most interesting point in the article I think is this:

Now that the social layer has been built, some people say the next layer will be the game layer. The game layer will install game mechanics in everything, and game mechanics are a way to manipulate human behavior. The optimists say that we can use game mechanics to manipulate ourselves to be better—nicer, more productive, not as fat—and that the companies who figure out how to install that layer will be the next Facebooks. Here’s how Rahul explains it: “The biggest trend in Web applications right now is adding game design. With the theory of game design, you want a curve like this: increasingly large payoffs at random but increasingly spaced intervals. So the first payoff is very small, and the next payoff is a little bigger, and the next one… To begin with, you get a payoff one out of five actions, then it’s one out of twenty, then it’s one out of fifty—but those intervals have to be random. That is the key to human addiction.

Here’s a bonus topic:

I’d wager that of all the companies I’ve mentioned in this article, the one that freaks you out the most is Swipely. The place where you give it access to your credit card and it starts sharing all your purchases with your “friends.” I mean, let’s start with “give it access to your credit card.” But there’s a business that freaks people out more than Swipely. It’s called Blippy. (I know, I know: You might think that Internet companies might try not naming themselves something nonsensical that implies lots of exclamation points.) Blippy is like Swipely with one big functional difference. Blippy displays how much money you spent on something. If you buy a $365 sweater at Barneys, your Blippy friends will know you bought a $365 sweater at Barneys.

I can actually see a great use for a site like this in sharing bargains, rather than showing off your expensive purchases.

To help me when I’m waiting or bored, I installed an Instapaper app on my phone. Instapaper is a service where you can save articles and then read them through the site (or through some other app).

Here’s an interesting article I read about “friends”, and not friends. The definition of friends has been diluted now, with acquaintances becoming known as friends thanks to Facebook and other social networking sites. But this article is arguing that our society is changing and we have very few real “friends” now.

But we live now in a climate in which friends appear dispensable. While most of us wouldn’t last long outside the intricate web of interdependence that supplies all our physical needs—imagine no electricity, money, or sewers—we’ve come to demand of ourselves truly radical levels of emotional self-sufficiency. In America today, half of adults are unmarried, and more than a quarter live alone. As Robert Putnam showed in his 2000 book Bowling Alone, civic involvement and private associations were on the wane at the end of the 20th century. Several years later, social scientists made headlines with a survey showing that Americans had a third fewer nonfamily confidants than two decades earlier. A quarter of us had no such confidants at all.

In a separate study, Nicholas Christakis and James Fowler, authors of Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives (2009), surveyed more than 3,000 randomly chosen Americans and found they had an average of four “close social contacts” with whom they could discuss important matters or spend free time. But only half of these contacts were solely friends; the rest were a variety of others, including spouses and children.

What’s better than badges? More badges! Well, not Foursquare ones, but Miso.

What’s Miso? It’s kind of like Foursquare, except instead of checking in at locations, you check in when you’re watching TV shows or movies. Everything else is pretty much the same. I would have signed up earlier, as I have badge OCD, but I don’t watch TV that much. Now that I’m back with my parents, I don’t have too much to do so that means a lot of TV time (and they actually have cable!).

Most of the necessary opinions and reactions have already been covered online and in the press about the Virginia Tech shootings. Rather than express my agreement with them, here are some salient ideas:

  1. Were you as surprised as I was that the ethnicity of the shooter was a Korean? I’m sure most people would rank that possibly pretty low and would have expected a person of another race or culture. I’m not sure how Korea bred terrorists such as Cho Seung-hui from playing Starcraft instead of GTA.
  2. The thing that interested me most about this story was to find out the killer’s motivation. Possibly due to point #1.
  3. How Social Networking has effected our lives 101:

I usually have Space running on my TV as a sort of ambient noise. There are a variety of shows that run from mildly interesting to shows that I enjoy, such as: Star Trek: TNG, Star Trek: Voyager, Enterprise, Andromeda, Stargate SG-1, and Alias. All of these shows are syndicated so in the 9 months or so that I’ve been doing this, I’ve pretty much seen all the episodes of all of these shows.

Now, I think some of these shows are really great, and I put them on those lists of favorite TV shows that invariably are included within user profiles. But, when the shows come on TV now, I typically do something else or turn the TV off. Why? because I’ve already seen everything! So are they still considered a favorite when I treat them like I would a show that I don’t like?

I think they can solve this problem by asking the question: What TV shows do you currently watch? and not What are your favorite TV shows?

Like MySpace and other social networking sites; Facebook has hard at work this summer adding a complete package of features to keep you absorbed into their site. The main feature I thought that they were always missing was a My Blog feature, which they have recently addressed with Facebook Notes.

It’s not really anything new, and I originally wasn’t too excited about it (yah another blog). But after playing around with it, I did notice something useful for me; and that is the ability to syndicate another blog into your Facebook notes. So right now I’ve syndicated all the content from my orangefever RSS feed into My Notes for your duplicated perusal.

Also, I guess the second neat thing is the ability to link your notes with your friends. I guess that’s a lot like people-tagging your blogs, and maybe something I should adopt too.