Learning to network

October 28, 2007

Facebook is not just a social network, more a Web 2.x platform

Filed under: Manage my network, Social Media, Technologies — Arthur M. Gallagher @ 1:22 am

I have been reading a number of article discussing “social networking fatigue”. Unfortunately I have been slow to catch up on them, finding the odd moment in the wee small hours – and that’s the point … too much to do, too many networks to maintain.

However, this lines me up nicely for one of my standard excuses as to why I’m still not even in the mass adoption phase with Facebook. I could pull up a number of other excuses, but of course the old “four young kids and day job to hold down” is still my favourite.

However good I am at swimming against the tide, however, there is one fact about facebook that I can’t deny is _very_ appealing. Extensibility! What moves it from a Web 2.0 social network to a web 2.x environment (I’m not gonna count my web 3.0 chickens before they’re hatched) is the fact that is has become a “platform”. This all comes down to the fact that Facebook opened up “API” accessibility to it a few months back. This effectively means that instead of all our wonderful information on profiles, groups, connections, etc being locked in (like in LinkedIn), it can be accessed by anyone with the right widget, or sufficient determination to write a new widget for their intended purpose.

Now as much as this customised access is putting a strain on the servers and the Facebook code, it does mean that you can start to do things that you wouldn’t have thought possible until just before some bright spark made them work. Errrr, is it called leveraging? Or is it called creating a brave new world?

Anyhow, enough eulogising – find out some examples of how you can “leverage this Web 2.x platform” (can’t believe I actually wrote that!) by reading Facebook as a Learning Platform on Paul Coyne’s blog, or better still, spend inordinate amounts of your precious time in the world of profiles, personal associations, pokes and now platforms for profitable interaction.

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