I'm having a social-network identity crisis. That is to say, I'm having a crisis due to how many places I have an on-line identity.
I have a lot of on-line friends, but they are scattered across multiple sites. And even though many of them have a few websites in common, there is no one place frequented by all of them (no, not even Facebook).
I'm sending this through Ping.fm, which I've come to use more and more thanks to its ease of use and its ability to blast posts to multiple services at once. I think this may be the best solution available to me from a pool of just-okay ones. It lets me be heard on multiple sites and it doesn't require me to beg my friends to convert to something new.
The problem still unresolved is that there's no way for me to collect any and all responses *from* friends across various sites into one place where I can read them. I could come close by using FriendFeed or another RSS reader/aggregator, but some sites (hello, Facebook?) don't make feeds available for things like that.
On a slightly related note, I've been working on a chart of my "social knotwork" that shows the flow of posts I make onto and among the various sites I frequent. Maybe I will make it public, maybe not.
P.S. This was supposed to go to both Facebook and LiveJournal, but it failed to make it onto LJ (I've copied it over manually). I hope that doesn't mean I have to mistrust Ping.fm now.
If I hadn't been away from LiveJournal for so long, I would have noticed that they have official Facebook support now. It's not huge support, but it has the one most important thing, which is putting a note on Facebook whenever I update on LJ.
Haven't tried it yet, but I'm going to see how well it works... now.
I'm still spending most of my on-line social time on Facebook. And I'm still wrestling with how to have all of my activity show up in one place. Like most people care. :-)
The best I can do right now is FriendFeed. You can find me there and see most every piddly detail of my on-line activity except for Facebook. Apparently the nitwits at FB don't think it's worth it to have individual users' activity available via standard means of sharing—and come to think of it, maybe they're right. So if you really want to see what I'm doing on Facebook, you can look me up directly on there.
I like FriendFeed because it also works in the other direction, letting me group friends' public, on-line activity feeds together in a logical way. Friends don't even have to be FriendFeed users, but it makes things nicer if they are. (hint) ;-)
FriendFeed is still not the holy grail, though (to me). As mentioned, Facebook doesn't play well with it, and there's still no way to read friends-only things (like semi-private posts here on LiveJournal) without checking individual sites. Maybe Flock is good at this, but I wouldn't know because I haven't tried it, and since it is a browser and not a website, it must be installed before it can be used.
So, bottom line: find me on Facebook to see what I'm doing on Facebook, look at my FriendFeed feed to see everything else (everything that can be made public, anyway).
And I may yet get back into making big posts one of these days. It may or may not be here on LJ, but it will be made known here.
I've been pretty obsessed with Facebook lately. Don't ask me why.
They have new options for pulling in posts from other sites like Flickr, Pandora, etc., which I think is swell. I like the idea of a central place to show off all of my activity, which is scattered far and wide across a number of Web sites (some well-known, some more obscure). Other sites like Profilactic, iStalkr, and that one Red Hat thing (Mugshot?) have attempted to be the place for people to do this, but they haven't grabbed me. Someday I'd like to roll my own and put it on my personal Web site (now gathering dust bunnies), but I have been alternately too lazy and too scatter-brained to do this.
So Facebook is doing its feed-inclusion thing, and they have an option for adding your own custom RSS feed. Great, I thought, I can just load it up with a bunch of feeds. Nuh-uh. Facebook only gives me one slot for that.
Hmmm, okay. I decided to attack it by mixing all of my feeds together into one. And, again, I found a number of sites that want to make themselves the place to do this. But, again, I prefer having something that gives me a little more personal control.
So I'm revisiting something I haven't looked at in a while: Yahoo! Pipes, the Swiss-army knife of RSS feeds (or, if you prefer a less masculine metaphor, the KitchenAid of RSS feeds). I'm at a loss for words to describe it, other than to say that Mac OS X geeks who have used Quartz Composer will find some strong similarities. In any case, I'm finding it just powerful enough to do the kinds of things I need to do to blend my feeds together. I can add on the name of each feed to the title of each item so they are easily identified on my Facebook page. I should be able to do some fine-tuning on each feed, too, where the formatting as rendered by Facebook is lacking.
I don't remember if I mentioned this before: The Swami Sound System, a weird but excellent radio program that's on Saturday nights here in San Diego (94.9 FM, a.k.a. FM 94/9"). It's hosted by the Swami—really a member of Rocket From the Crypt under an alias—and it's three hours of whatever he feels like playing, usually a mix of garage rock from the '60s, punk and funk from the '70s, etc., virtually all from little-known or unknown bands (though he did dedicate his entire three hours to Electric Light Orchestra one night).
It's on from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Pacific Time on Saturday nights. It's on right now as I write this, so if you're reading this shortly after I posted it, you can go tune in now. But don't despair if you got here late, because lucky for you, they've started archiving it as audio on demand; just follow the Swami Sound System link above.
A whole new generation of geeks is about to become acquainted with the affliction known as "gorilla arm."
(P.S. Haven't found a good way to post to both LJ and Facebook at the same time. I may have to settle for posting to LJ and having generic "Larry has updated his LiveJournal" notices show up on Facebook, but I'm not quite satisfied with that.)