My last blog was on Social Networking - Now & How ? - Here. But it's still not over for me. There's more which is going in my processor even now. So moving ahead - what’s falling short in the most prominent N/W’s like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn ?
So here I go with my analysis :
- Made on ROR's (Ruby on Rails) light-weight framework, it is the numero-uno choice for socialites, celebrities, business tycoons and even a common man who wants to make their presence felt or heard using a 140 character text. Additionally you can include URLs, hash-tags and cross-mentions.
- Has caught the eyes of all with 3 lakh new accounts created everyday.
- But being developed and running on ROR is itself turning out to be a curse for Twitter with down-times, overloads, multi-threading delays in browsers, scalability problems, etc. ROR is a light-weight framework which cannot handle images/videos under high load. So they have to do away from the Rails Framework and probably migrate to PHP, Java, etc before it's too late.
- Also, the web-interface of Twitter has always given an unpleasant and slow experience for users and hence Web-Apps. leveraging the Twitter API spawned and have taken prominence. If this continues, Twitter soon will find users eating their food in other’s plate which is not a very good thing for them. Agreed that finally it's their own API which is being used but they're losing on the revenue which the App-makers snatch from Ads.
- 140 characters – The biggest subject of criticism. Some people could just not get their vocabulary, grammar and URLs’ within this available space. Incrementing it by 20 characters would negotiate this problem for now. Yes, its desperately needed.
- Getting tweets to have comments below it (like in Facebook) is another much needed feature addition. Opening the page for @Username to view the replies is too cumbersome.
- Also, if tweets can be bundled with a photo/video/link, exactly in Facebook style would have been even more enjoyable.
- It started off as a professional network and slowly collaborated Twitter and other services but it still remains a choice for a selected few. While some claim to have benefitted personally, others are totally dismissive about it and label it as a place where you should just have your professional profile!
- Frankly speaking, it hasn’t evolved at a speed it should have (or say as we expected). Its motives are still vague and don’t justify its purpose.
- Has started collaborating with other social engines like Twitter, Facebook, etc with some Apps. and services, but still a lot has to be done in the long run for it to stay in the dominating league.
- Just having professional contacts in your network doesn’t mean anything, probably if CHATTING would have been embedded then having a live conversation would have made sense. Add to it, the need for getting the organization to which a user is affiliated to come more into picture.
- Also, the IntelliSense engine of LinkedIn doesn’t suggest anything fruitful to the user, except some related users and groups.
- Improving and adding on all of the above points, plus innovating on some more would surely help it grab a good share. And mind you LinkedIn, socializing features has to be packaged to the user even if it intends to be just a professional network.
- Apart from being a billion-dollar enterprise currently, it has previously turned down acquisition proposal of giants like Yahoo and is currently bearing a 1.7% stake by Microsoft. It has literally held the interest of all Internet users. No surprises, surfing and being on Facebook is now synonymous.
- As per a survey, businesses are being affected due to their employees spending an average of an hour on Facebook and Twitter. Add to it, Facebook Apps. has added the tang which was just unimagined. Remember Farmville and Mafia Wars .. ?
- Facebook's user-friendly and well-documented API’s like Facebook Connect is a boon for web developers like us and more of these just keep coming!
- Facebook is in such a success stage when nothing seems to be competing against it – no full-fledge social N/W (forget about Orkut, etc). The only thing which users feel hurt with it are its bugs - which are ample. But, I guess the speed at which it has proliferated its wings just dwarfs this issue.
- Getting Office documents for sharing and collaboration across users is already on the anvil with Microsoft’s Fuse Labs in BETA. Getting the notion - Work & Socialize - to come into picture would be awesome. It’s just gonna redefine the wheel.
- Themes, customized home-page would be welcome coz the Home-Page is just too loaded with items and updates which not all would like to view all the time. Getting it to be as per users’ wishes would just add more action and productivity.