Social networking websites and RISC OSBy Mike Carter. Published: 9th Sep 2007, 13:34:10 | Permalink | Printable
lol omghi2u r u on faceb00k yet??Over the past two or more years, social networking websites have become super-soar-away popular especially among youngsters. Stop us if this isn't news to you. Top examples of social networking sites include Facebook, MySpace and Friends Reunited. One per cent of global Internet traffic last month was reportedly Facebook page views.
Why join a social network? What on Earth is a social network?
For those not in the know, it is exactly what it says on the tin. A social network is a website made up of people's profile pages that are linked together by friendships or some other connection. Each page includes information, contact details, photographs and quite possibly more about a given person.
This data is often supplied by the owner of the profile page, but their friends can usually add more to it in some way - such as by leaving messages. The key point to grasp is that profiles are in some way linked, such as friends linking to each others' profiles, or in the case of LinkedIn, colleagues and ex-colleagues mapping out who they have worked with.
There are, of course, privacy settings to restrict exactly who can see what information. There are a number of health warnings on the information you supply on your profile page.
Where does RISC OS a part play in all of this?
Once upon a time, there was a RISC OS and Acorn group on the early networking site Orkut, Google's project that was a little ahead of its time. However relevant groups are now appearing on the latest generation of sites. These allow punters to swap messages and links, post photographs, recommend games and other hints and tips.
If I wanted to join Facebook or MySpace, what would be the best browser to use? NetSurf is the most stable one to use here, and although it doesn't completely render the pages properly, it makes a pretty good stab at it.
NetSurf displaying Facebook and MySpace. Click for bigger
Firefox displays the pages almost perfectly, but you have to put up with it being slow at times.
The Firefox port displaying Facebook and MySpace. Click for bigger
All in all, I believe it's a bit of fun and a good way to keep in contact with friends who live some distance from you. It's also a great way to share photos, videos and other bits and pieces - and if you don't wont anyone looking through your personal details, you can always make your profile more private.
RISC OS users on Facebook
Acorn computer and BBC Micro enthusiasts on Facebook
Granny's Garden fans on Facebook
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