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Saturday, November 11, 2006

November 11 - Microsoft Myspace


No, this isn't a joke! Microsoft have just launched their very own MySpace! Or as they put it, 'MySpace for IT Pros'! This is quite amazing, really quite amazing stuff. The service is brought to you by Microsoft Tech Net and Cluminis, but still has a lower Alexa rank than Profy and my very own website. No doubt, this will change with time, but there's no telling what new bangs the project will introduce into social networking. To log in to the website, you need to have a Microsoft .net passport, something I ditched well over a year ago. Hopefully, sometime in the near future, Microsoft will remove the '.net' only bit of the site and open it to all of us.
The service, named Aggreg8, like I mentioned before, is a MS version of MySpace designed for IT Professionals. What does Aggreg8 do? Well, you can create your very own profile, join a cluster or a group and create a blog, all within Aggreg8's website. The site, contrary to what I first thought on seeing the name, is not related at all to the RSS reader with the same name. Instead of going off in a huff, the creator of the Aggreg8 RSS reader has actually admitted that he sold Aggreg8.com and Aggreg8.net to Microsoft earlier this year, for a combined total of $5000.

Once you've signed in with your stupid '.net passport', you can change your login details completely, hence making the previous passport step completely useless and a total waste of time. The site itself is very bland and basic, but at least it has working messaging, profiles, tags and groups. A contact of mine Pete Cashmore actually was debating with some other professionals, whether or not Aggreg8 was intended for a public release just yet, or whether it wasn't meant to be launched right now. Who knows. On the Aggreg8.com homepage, you'll see the links of users (and their spiffy avatars) who've been most active, most befriended and top rated. There are also very mini RSS feeds for these categories. Who knows who'll actually want to subscribe to them, unless you're up there, you probably couldn't care less.

The site has a beautiful graphical design, but lacks so many features that make other social networking sites what they are today. Certainly an interesting concept and idea. I'll keep my out on this new Aggreg8, it shows promise in the long-run. via me on Profy.com. Oh, and happy Remembrance Day!

EDIT: Since this posting, two big blogs have already cited this. Emerging Earth and The Microsoft Weblog.

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