With the inevitable expansion of social networks and the growth of online communities, people are coming up with new ways to group and organize their communities. As we spend more time interacting with communities, we’re also discovering new distinctions within them. In other words, “friends”, “family” and “professional network” are simply not enough anymore.
What I want is a tool that applies fairly simple existing technology to help sort my content streams by relationship groupings that I can set up myself. This would allow me to quickly filter my micro-streams to see just what’s being said by my local friends, my Boston based friends, my marketing industry colleagues, or by my office chums.
It turns out that you can do this for Twitter on your desktop with tools like: Nambu (Mac Only), TweetDeck, and Seesmic. In Facebook, you can create a friend list, and then show updates for that list …. but it’s three or so clicks away from your main stream (thanks to Dan Harrelson for this info). But …. and this is a big BUT ….
It hasn’t hit the mobile environment yetÂ So, I’ve thrown together a quick prototype of the kind of thing I’m looking for based on the Twitterific iPhone App. In this example, I’ve pulled in my groups from the addressbook of the phone but it would make sense for them to sychronize with my desktop tool.
I’m sure something like this is coming along any minute now. What we’re really headed towards is the ability to pull together a quick huddle of a specific group of contacts, so that I can hear just them for a moment while the crowd continues to chatter away. Actually, I really like the name “huddle” somebody should use that.