It’s dangerous to go alone

Social networking, for one

By Dave Menendez
Saturday, March 31, 2007, at 11:48 PM

Summary: I’m trying out some social websites, such as Twitter, Last FM, and Friendster.

There’s a few new links in the sidebar on ZedneWeb’s front page. I’m trying out some of the social net thingies, and I figure I might as well list them here in case any of my readers are using the same services.

Twitter is a popular, new status update/messaging thing. It’s reminiscent of the .plan files, back in the days of finger, or status messages in IM. The idea is that you post messages every so often saying what you’re doing. Your friends can use this as a quick way to see what you’re up to.

I am probably not the sort of person for whom Twitter is intended. I don’t make much use of IM or text messaging. Worse, I don’t know if any of my friends are using it, so I’m missing out on most of the experience. But I suppose someone has to be first.

Last FM is a music-recommendation service. I downloaded a small piece of software which notes every song I play in iTunes or on my iPod, and uses this to suggest other music I might like. It also keeps track of your top artists and such. (It turns out, I listen to the Beatles a lot more than I realized.)

There are social aspects as well. Last FM notes members who have similar musical taste, and it can track what your friends are listening to.

Finally, Friendster is one of the old-time social networking sites. (I can’t remember whether it was the first or not.) Why join now, instead of something more now, like Facebook, or even something still relatively current, like MySpace? Mostly because a friend of mine invited me. If I’m going to try out a social networking site, it might as well be one where I have a social network.

Granted, I have not yet figured out what one can do with Friendster, aside from seeing whether it can connect you with random people through the graph of friendship. I haven’t even bothered to befriend most of the people I know who are using it. (Partially, this is because I start to over-think the subtleties and uncertainties involved in the word “friend”. Also, I’m lazy.)

Anyway, I link to them here and on the front page in case any of my friends or readers use these services and want to know my user name. Or just want to know what musical groups I listened to last week.