Friday, September 23, 2011

Tinkering with Facebook Timeline

Just enabled the Facebook Timeline so I can start tinkering with it right away. Being wary on data privacy, there are things that I want to make sure of such information that I only want to be viewable to myself shall remain as such. More importantly, my connection with friends.

New Facebook Timeline of Janette Toral viewed as another person.
What I like about it so far is the history of Pages "liked" and Groups "joined". There is an option where you can view the individual entries and unlike the pages. But for groups, you really have to visit each one, even if they are already old to "leave group".

Check-in history of Janette Toral via Facebook Places
Maps and Check-in History

Another thing that caught my fancy is the Maps feature where you can have a big picture overview of your check-in history and up to the status update that you posted then.

So like in this case, I was able to view my check-in lately from multiple locations ever since I started using Facebook Places.

Zooming in to the Philippines showed me the check-ins I made from various locations through out the country.

Drilling down further allowed to glimpse my status post in relation to that location.

Philippines check-in history of Janette Toral via Facebook Places

Check-in history from one location as zoomed in via Facebook Places

If there is one suggestion that I could give at the moment, that will be to have an omnibus option to hide all "add friends" activity. In the old timeline, I have already disabled this from appearing in my wall. However, in this new timeline, it is appearing and therefore have to disable it as early as now. When you have reached the friends limit, that can be quite a lot but I am sure it will be all worth it.

New friends added appears in the New Facebook Timeline even if you have disabled this in the current version of Facebook.

When browsing friends who
like your content, you can now
categorize them too.
Facebook Friends List

One old and now an improved feature that I began using Facebook with the new Timeline is the categorization of friends or connections. Those who respond to my content frequently (such as liking or posting comments) are now in a special group. This I check so I can also reciprocate if they share anything of interest.

New likers and commenters are also immediately added there. When you mouse-over a person's name, you just click on the "Friends" button and decide which list do you want this person to belong.

Also put some folks in the close friends list where I immediately receive a notification if they posted anything new. It is a great feeling to be able to respond immediately to content from those who are really important to you.

This is quite important to me. With around 5000 connections on Facebook, one can get overwhelmed with various content being shared. With these new features, you can now be more organized and focus on quality relationships.

So if you see me responding to your content more often than I did before, this is the reason behind it. :)

Facebook Tagging

I have always been annoyed whenever there are people who tag me on photos that is not related to me all. Usually try to find the nearest browser, from a phone or computer, just to untag myself immediately.

Finally, Facebook has done something about it by allowing you to review first any tagged content and decide if you want them to appear on your wall or Timeline. I am sure that a lot of us will be spared from various tagging promotions agony without offending friends or connections.

I think the bottom line with what Facebook has done - is to ensure that new players like Google+ will not look anywhere near it. Making the comparison between the two seems far too wide now. The personalization features got me glued to Facebook more than ever.

It gives the feeling like - I am home.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Rescue your Time: Reality-check on Productivity and Handling Distractions

It depends on the kind of work that you do, I can often refer to myself as one of the most distracted online. That is why when a DigitalFilipino Club member shared the tool RescueTime, I immediately signed-up wanting to learn more on how I spend time online.

After installing since July, this is the 2nd time that I looked at the report and calibrate the scoring system in order to make a much more honest assessment. This includes reducing the score values of some metrics such as reducing social network activity scores to 1 or 0 (from 2) and uncategorize offline activities such as rest, sleep, and eating.

Assessing my online activities made me realize the following I want to spend more time on:

  1. E-Mail.
    With social networks being enjoyable and productive due to the kind of work that I have, the time I spent on e-mail has significantly and oftentimes only attended to - when it is badly needed. Perhaps e-mail also deserves a new interface that can interact with its users in these changing times where a lot of us spend a lot of time in social networking sites.
  2. Blog and write original content.
    One of the reasons attributing to my high social network activity is the time spent on reading and sharing interesting sources online. In these instances, I often have personal anecdotes to add and note it in the comments section. However, I decided to do this less and commit to writing these thoughts in my blog more. To help me in this phase, I defined blogging activities under marketing and hope that can improve my score.
So far RescueTime is a valuable resource that allowed me to have a reality check of sorts on how I conduct myself online. 

It also compelled me to be honest with myself that despite high productivity in some areas of my work, there are some that I indeed neglect that will require a change on how I do things. This includes understanding as well on what caused such change and how to move forward.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Keeping tune to your friends shared music via SoundCloud

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Just downloaded the SoundCloud iPhone application and now find myself listening to shared music and podcast by friends.

If you sign-in via Facebook, you will discover who among the folks you are connected to has a SoundCloud account and can connect with. If you don't dig their kind of music, just unfollow.

Also discovered some interesting SoundCloud user accounts shared via Twitter that I end up adding to my collection as well and follow those they are connected with.

Go ahead and start building your SoundCloud collection today. :)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Blogger iPhone app now available

Finally, the Blogger iPhone app is now available that allows you to update your blog whenever the need arises.

Will see if this will make me blog more frequently.