making linkedin a platform

recently, i have been spending some time on linkedin. of all the social networks out there, it has the most appeal to me: there is less nonsense on it, and people are motivated to use it for work. bergie had this link to an essay on linkedin as a platform play that i wanted to comment on.

full public profile

There’s still a tragically high barrier to entry: without logging in to LinkedIn, you can only view a summary of the profile. This is total crap: it doesn’t make it easy for me as a user to extend the reach of LinkedIn. I’d love send that URL as my resume to people, but if they have to create an account to log in to LinkedIn, I’m not going to do it.

my public linkedin profile is already in the top 20 google results for my name. making this more full-fledged would allow people to better take charge of their public image on the internets (something increasingly important)

show linkedin data elsewhere

For example, it’d be awesome if there was a JavaScript include that would list people’s endorsements of you. I’m sure people would love to put that in their blogs. And it’d be great for the coders out there if all the data in LinkedIn could be retrieved with simple REST calls that returned simple, XML formated data-documents.

linkedin has a lot of (currently dormant) currency it could use to become an important platform for user ratings. just like ebay has its seller / buyer ratings, the endorsements are quite valuable, but are locked into linkedin today. the system would need better ways to deal with people who game the system, but it is off to
a terrific start.

linkedin RSS feeds

It’s frankly shocking that there aren’t LinkedIn feeds for events that occur in your social network. When someone gets a new job, you get an endorsement, someone else gets an endorsement, someone adds a new contact…all those activities that people may want to respond to are locked up in the system.

we are all busy, and who remembers to always go check the linkedin homepage for new things happening? that’s so 1998.

company ratings

You could even imagine something like this: people can write in their experiences applying for jobs at different companies. When you ask LinkedIn to send you resume to a job, it could tell you people’s over-all feel for that company. That’s the kind of collective/emergant wisdom that only a hosted application like LinkedIn can do.

companies are people too :) (according to the law). why not make it possible to see how a company is viewed overall?

company drill-downs

Speaking of hosted applications, LinkedIn could become the org-chart application for companies everywhere. Most large companies I’ve worked at had that funky applet you could go to in the intranet and pan through the org-chart. LinkedIn already has a ton of data that people have agreed to put in the clear. Instead of those boring, information skinny org-charts you’re used, LinkedIn could provide a much richer, and fatter org chart. Want to see endorsements that people have given Jane in IT? Does the fact that Jack has no endorsements mean you should avoid giving him The Big Project?

i am sure a lot of people are already using linkedin to reverse engineer org charts from companies they do business with. why not make this easier? if you are concerned about headhunters, offer a more
competitive / attractive work environment.
is linkedin listening? i’d sure like to see these things implemented. what do you think?

hello google dating?

orkut is an online community that connects people through a network of trusted friends.
We are committed to providing an online meeting place where people can socialize, make new acquaintances and find others who share their interests.
in affiliation with google

smart move on googles part to capitalize on prior art.

no soliciting

I am writing to find out something from you. I have my sister who lives in Boston right now, and having a really TOUGH time finding employment. According to you, what are the opportunities like? I used to live in Boston, actually, I attended Suffolk, and I can’t believe that she can’t find anything. How about your company, do you think you can work some magic?
i’m getting solicitations from strangers on ryze now..

lobotomized schmoozing

idea exchange for the blog-challenged
check out the flash animations with the use cases for their connection technology. hilarious. can’t fault them for trying though, but these devices are far too limited to be useful. ideally, you’d receive a list of names upon entering a room at a social event that gives you an indication how many degrees of separation you have between your blog and other attendees, and their major topics. some of the ingredients are there already:

  • moblogging
  • presence management
  • blogroll traversal
  • global categorization systems
  • topic correlation by link analysis and pattern recognition

escaping the fangs of closed communities

i take part in various of the newfangled social network sites because i am curious as to where they may lead us. since i started, i had a couple quite interesting things happen to me thanks to that acquaintance of acquaintance model. however, one thing has become increasingly clear over the months: the need to remain in control of you social network.
currently, a lot of the social network sites try to capitalize on the phenomenon, and they make damn sure you do not subvert their networks. none of them provides a way to export your network as FOAF, for instance. most of them also make sure that they remain the only tie you have to some of your acquaintances, and thus outlaw any information in your profile that could uniquely identify you outside your profile within their system.
it has become a pastime of mine to devise ways to slip those global identifiers into my profiles without drawing the attention of the site operators. what worked for me so far is to hint at applicable google terms i own.
only in san francisco could there be a rally that is aligned with my cause.

simplicity drives adoption

i joined meinbild.ch today after bernhard had some interesting things to say about it. bernhard argues that simplicity can drive adoption, and that simplicity may help to even the gender balance online:
And what is noticeable are two things: 1. It is really, really basic and lacks many features of the usual dating sites. 2. It is quite successful.
now, with it’s friends feature, one could imagine this service to emit FOAF somewhere.. granted that’s totally against the simplicity argument, but it could be hidden at first..

burning FOAF

With the help of anselm, JibberJim, danbri, and zool from #foaf on irc.freenode.net, as well as the almighty google, I’ve compiled the below links (in the extended entry of this post). The plan is to add plugins to the web logging (blogs) application we will be using to provide burners with publishing, Movable Type, to allow people to set up their own FOAF identity and say where they can be found on the playa.
this should be fun. i can hardly think of a better match between the online and the offline. the playa is all about meeting people, and FOAF is the online equivalent of it.