Facebook keeps showing up on my radar screen lately. So I signed up for a page. I am an absolute beginner trying to find my way around.
After being an early adopter of Ryze, Flickr, Orkut and more, I lost interest. Except for Flickr which is a more focused app. I had lots of high hopes for these early efforts, but not much came of them. After a while, I gave up on the possibility these SNS's had and in the mean time there has gotten to be so many that it is kind of crazy.
But now, the digerati has spoken. Facebook with its shiny new open API is the one. It exceeds my old expectations and hopes in many ways and seems to have boatloads of potential.
First impression, Facebook is waaay easier than the other social networking services I've tried before. Way easier in a kind of Macintosh way. You get more in return for your trouble. And the trouble is minimal actually. There are all these canned little pieces you can add to your page by clicking an Add button. I wish Typepad would be so easy!
Being a big non-fiction reader, I like the little books app and it is now a part of my page. By the way, remember I am a beginner, so my advice as to the best things may be a bit limited. But I know when I'm having fun and when I experience value.
The coolest thing about the books app for me is that I can select a book and see facebook member's comments on the book. It is kind of neat, because the book becomes this selector finding people who (1) read the book and (2) were willing to take the trouble to write a comment.
The other cool thing I am enjoying is that you can see what your friends are doing on facebook. You can see what applications they've added and what applications they've removed. That's a great way for me to see what applications to try. I can also go see the applications in use on their profiles.
I'm thinking that if facebook can gain a big enough audience beyond just the college set, it could be a great tool for keeping up with your friends. I really like it. But then, I'm a bit of an introvert, so I like this easy way to learn about things my friends are doing. Once you give me a scrap of information, then I have something to talk with you about.
Also, I admit that I like the college kids dna as the start of facebook. I've got two master's degrees myself, so these are my kind of people, if a bit young. I suppose I shouldn't be surpised if something even better comes along, but right now facebook is the best of class and I'm enjoying it.