So, I’m spending a lot of time on the internet today and yesterday. And I realize, I may be addicted to start-up internet companies.It’s almost an obsession of mine. I have a bunch of important tech blogs, like Mashable and Techmeme, and Techcrunch and a bunch of others on my iGoogle page “Tech”, and whenever a startup that is slightly interesting is mentioned, I go and sign up. Why? Well for one…ok, it’s a quest to be able to use the handle “Felicia” instead of “FeliciaDay.” It’s like, I’ve arrived first: The first Felicia to…mark the territory. Grossly put. BUT second reason: I’m desperate for a way to manage my online life.Not only do I have all the requisite social networking accounts, but I have many other places where I like to have a web presence, like Twitter, and Flickr, etc. But it’s become a chore, as you’ve heard me whine time and time again, to maintain all these and keep up with them. Good thing: A lot of entrepreneurs are aware of the niche-filling problem and are filling it. To varying success.
The hottest one of these is FriendFeed. It’s been jumped on by the early adopter band wagon, and YES I’ve been on there for several weeks now, but honestly, I don’t really get how to use it that well. You can basically hook up your online life feed there, add all the things you do on the internet like Facebook and YouTube and Flikr etc. and have it be a feed on you that people can Subscribe to, like RSS. Cool concept. Sad to say, the superficial rules my impression of this site. The look of it is pretty bare bones and not attractive. It doesn’t make me want to hang around at all. And it just seems like there’s an endless feed of junk, and that’s from being subscribed to just one or two people! I’m only following a few relative strangers now, but even if they were my closest buddies, the aesthetics of this site leave me wanting more. Evidently new stuff will come rolling in soon, (Hopefully a more attractive way of sorting feed information) and there ARE nice features like commenting on feeds etc. I will keep trying it, but they need to get some Makeover magic!
That is what SocialThing! has, and yes, I tend to want to play around with this site more because it’s pretty. Unfortunately, they are limited at this point in what programs you can add (they’re adding new places like WordPress, Pandora etc. on a continuing basis) and it doesn’t allow comments like Friendfeed does, so I don’t log in much. I’ve heard that it’s capabilities are much shallower than Friendfeed, but I’m not that sophisticated a user so I haven’t delved into the micro-utilization. I like it enough to say that when it has a greater selection, I will totally use it more.
The program that has really changed my online life in a small way is something my brother Ryon (YES I GAVE YOU CREDIT) hooked me into: Digsby. If you’ve ever used Trillian, or Adium for the Mac (Other downloadable chat aggregators), you know the joy of having IM and ICQ and Yahoo Messenger together, but Digsby has made me a happy clam like no one’s business! Not only do I have IM/ICQ/Messenger AND Google Chat in one program, but it has Facebook AND Myspace alerts AND email alerts! So, depending on what I tell it to alert me about, a little attractive rounded box pops up on my desktop. AND there are little icons for Facebook and Myspace, so I just click on those items in the toolbar, and can see all the activity for that program in a nice box. Don’t have to log into MySpace until I have to! Sadly, they aren’t supporting Mac yet, but they have plans for it in the near future they say. I would definitely recommend giving it a test drive if you’re a PCer.
I just stumbled across a web-based program like Digsby called Fuser that I just signed up for and will try out. DAMNIT! I WILL COMBINE THINGS! Anyone else have newer startup stuff they’re addicted to already? Clue me in!