XFN, FOAF – “With the Social Graph API, developers can now utilize public connections their users have already created in other web services. It makes information about public connections between people easily available and useful.”
“TYPOGRAPHY CAN subtly or boldly define a company, product, or person… The logos of the presidential candidates are no exception.”
A great summary of the standards currently available (OpenID, various microformats, API’s) that could be used to create portable social networks.
CreateSpace is entering the POD marketplace, so I would like to take this time to point out that Lulu’s api offers great opportunities for libraries and archives to sell already digitized content.
- BarCampRDU,Part 3, Social networking, Social browsing, and Microformats
- Faceted Friending: Using Tags to Increase Relevancy in Social Networks
Related posts on creative uses of the Lulu api:
I met Corey at BarCamp and we got to discuss this idea. I look forward to seeing where he takes it next.
There was a brief preliminary meeting at BarCampRDU.
An older report. Just saving it for later: “A December 2006 survey has found that 28% of internet users have tagged or categorized content online such as photos, news stories or blog posts.”
This is a major move forward in tagging: “In getting past words or short phrases, tagmash closes some of the gap between tagging and professional subject classifications.”
Weinberger’s take: “With tagmashes, the info that this tag is related to that one is gleaned from the fact that a human said that they were related.”
The abstract for Michael’s dissertation. I really look forward to reading it.
Faceted Friending is a term that I have started using to describe what I see as one of the next major stages of how tagging will improve social software. In his recent post titled Sharing and Following/Listening in the Social Web, Thomas Vander Wal discusses how networks are beginning to allow users a deeper level of granularity into how their defined relationships effect their sharing. For example, the Family, Friends, and All distinction in Flickr is built into how information is shared. Thomas’ post highlights some of the top level distinctions that people are making along these lines. While many of the following points will overlap with what Thomas is writing about, I believe that I offer a different perspective on many of the same issues.
One example he uses is “Geo Listening and Sharing”. Basically this includes sharing and listening to people in your geographic vicinity. I had the pleasure of working with Thomas on a DCampSouth. There we were broadly tackling how to improve status updates and Facebook feeds. One of the ideas we came up with was to allow sharing within a geographic area.at
The concept of faceted friending is being employed elsewhere on the web as well. The subscription function in del.icio.us is another popular example. I don’t necessarily want to subscribe to my contacts bookmarks about cats and local politics, but I might want to subscribe to their bookmarks on folksonomy and tagging. In fact, with resource sharing applications like del.icio.us, the utility is highly diluted when employed as a straight network. This is why at BiblioCommons, tagging and subject headings are the bonds that hold the network together. Rarely do I care about all of the topics that a person is reading up on, but I often am interested in one unique facet of our shared interests.
This is also important in more social instances. This became particularly noticeable to me when Facebook opened up to the world. Before, I primarily used Facebook to interact with local friends, friends from college, etc. All of a sudden half of my Facebook friends were librarians. While they are librarians who I consider friends, they don’t necessarily need to know my local happy hour plans and I don’t necessarily need to know about stuff they are doing outside of our shared participation in the library world. This background is how the idea of being able to focus status updates by shared personal facets or geography entered my mind when working on the design challenge with Thomas at DCamp.
One of the tricks to employing Faceted Friending is to make the process simple enough that users take advantage of it. That is why our group decided to minimize the facets that could be attached to a status update to those that would be most useful to that feature. Given that students often use it to share their whereabouts, the geographic importance of status came through as a major facet. The difference between core friends and acquaintances came through as a second, which lead us to the concept of a VIP status update that is only sent out to a core group of friends.
A second way to get people to take advantage of faceted friending is to automate the process as much as possible. So for example, when I add someone as a del.icio.us contact, the system could compare our tags, offer up the most common shared tags, and then offer that I pick tags to follow. Again, BiblioCommons is doing this very well and a lot of my belief in this concept comes from my time with them.
Another example of automating this process is through automatically determining geographical information. In the Facebook status updates example, Facebook could determine a users whereabouts by IP address and share their location oriented status updates with friends in that vicinity. Of course GPS can be used similarly.
A third way to simply the process of faceted friending is through embracing and developing open standards that can allow people to maintain categories of friends across social networks. Beginnings of this can be accomplished through adoption of creative uses for microformats such as XFN. This is a topic Chris Messina brought up at last years BarCampRDU that has been gaining increasing traction lately.
I hope to host a session on Faceted Friending at tomorrow’s BarCampRDU. Unfortunately, I will miss the morning sessions, but will pitch the idea for the afternoon.
I plan on writing a lot more about this topic, but was just trying to get a preliminary sketch of my ideas out there. I will be writing more on faceted tagging as well. Ultimately, I see the intersection of faceted tagging and faceted friending as fueling the next generation of social software.
For sessions 3 and 4, I attended sessions focusing on social software. From the wiki, session 3 was:
Social Networks – Fred Stutzman. We’ll spend a session talking about Social Networking Websites, such as Myspace, Facebook and Linked In. We’ll look at them, figure out why people use them, and share ideas about how businesses can leverage social networks.
It was attended by what seemed like half campers. Unfortunately, I didn’t really take very many notes during Fred’s session because I was already familiar with his main ideas. There are three main aspects of his thought that he discussed:
- His Facebook research (It really is fascinating)
- Situational Relevance:
Situational Relevance in Social Networking Website
Situational Relevance and Facebook’s Summer Traffic
- The Network Effect Multiplier, or, Metcalfe’s Flaw
Most of the discussion focused on situational relevance and the network effect multiplier. to get a good idea of the discussion, you might want to check out the discussion on those posts. I would also encourage you to check out my recent responses to Fred’s thought:
- Comments on “The Network Effect Multiplier, or, Metcalfe’s Flaw”
- Social networking site usage: An explanation for Facebook
Session 4 was on social bookmarking and was moderated by Chris Messina.Chris got the discussion rolling with by explaining his idea of the future of web browsing and his original vision for . He also made arguments for why the future of browsing is currently being developed with Webkit applications.
However, the discussion quickly turned to a discussion of microformats. Fred Stutzman and Terrell Russell or ClaimID (identity management) discussed their implementation of OpenID (universal distributed url login). hCards (like vCards) were also discussed. I had not really understood the idea of XFN before the discussion.
XFN is a simply way to define relationships between people. For example, this is implemented in WordPress when one adds a friend. A typical blogroll implementing XFN could look like this:
<a xhref="http://jane-blog.example.org/" mce_href="http://jane-blog.example.org/" rel="sweetheart date met">Jane</a> <a xhref="http://dave-blog.example.org/" mce_href="http://dave-blog.example.org/" rel="friend met">Dave</a> <a xhref="http://darryl-blog.example.org/" mce_href="http://darryl-blog.example.org/" rel="friend met">Darryl</a> <a xhref="http://www.metafilter.com/" mce_href="http://www.metafilter.com/" >MetaFilter</a> <a xhref="http://james-blog.example.com/" mce_href="http://james-blog.example.com/" rel="met">James Expert</a>
(example from XFN: Introduction and Examples)
It seems like a pretty straightforward evolution of social interaction through the web. It made me wonder why Facebook doesn’t implement this with all of the relationship data they hold. While it might be of limited value in their closed network, the future will (hopefully) allow exporting of data.
We discussed how all of these standards ought to interact in the future. If relationships and identity information were stored as microformats on an OpenID enabled server, it would become possible to export data from your OpenID server to a new service. This advance would make navigating between multiple social applications easier. It would also prevent the need to disclose uneccessary amounts of personal information by uploading ones address book to a new service. This move would both empower the user to take more control of their privacy while automating the more painful parts of joining a new network. My notes for this discussion read:
XFN + OpenID = portable network
XFN + hCard + Jabber + OpenID = ad hoc (open standards) social networks
These formulae certainly stay true to what Chris Messina began by describing as an “Architecture for Collaboration”.
I believe that we closed with a discussion of the privacy implications related to social browsing and microformats.
Technorati tags: microformats