I've had a bit of a play with orkut now, and it's quite interesting. I'm still far from sure where it's all going to go, but there is a lot of potential here.
I think that Sam's right in that orkut is better at providing a framework for existing communities than it is at creating new ones. Similarly, it's not really a way of making new friends; it's just a way of linking to friends you already have.
One thing it would be good for, though, is enabling people to make contact with friends of friends. If I wanted, say, to get in touch with that interesting friend of Steve's that I met in the pub the other night, then orkut could provide a path.
The community forums don't really seem to have taken off. What would you discuss at the Python community forum, for example, that wouldn't be better discussed at c.l.py?
A few gripes:
Why do I have to be someone's friend before I can be their fan? I've put myself down as a friend of Alex Martelli and Steve Holden, for example, though I've met the former once and the latter never at all. I had to do this in order to register myself as a fan.
Also, there aren't enough categories. "Haven't met", "acquaintance", "friend", "good friend" and "best friend" are all very well, but where do I put my mother in there? (Well, out of those options, obviously it's got to be "best friend" - especially since she reads this blog. ;-)Posted to The Internet by Simon Brunning at March 15, 2004 12:35 PM