FriendFeed Goes on Steroids (aka Real-Time)


I can hear a million keyboards typing away  writing a similar post as I am writing now. Regardless, I still wanted to share my first impressions of FriendFeed in Real-Time.

For those that have not checked out FriendFeed yet, you really should.  I have written a few post about it already and, as they continue to make updates, the service just keeps getting better and better.

No need for the refresh button anymore, FriendFeed released a new feature (still tagged as beta) today allowing users to view their stream in real-time.  As new content and comments are posted by friends and friend-of-friends, the real-time feed shows it.  It’s like being part of 10,000 (more?) conversations all at the same time.  With this new feature, I’m going to be re-evaluating how to manage my subscriptions, list, and rooms.

On first impression, I think allowing real-time in the main feed is ludicrous.  I think the conversations on FriendFeed have been awesome.  People will post a comment or a link or a blog post and a conversation would erupt around it.  By adding this chat room like option for users, I’m afraid people hanging out in real-time will a) miss more then they did before in the waterfall of noise and b) will engage in conversations too quickly by commenting on someone else’s comment without seeing the context.  However, I do see real value in this new feature on other parts of the site.

Real-Time in Rooms

The U.S. presidential debates are starting in 3 minutes (I’m recording it so I can watch later) and I know there are a few political rooms already setup on FriendFeed.  Plant yourself in one of those rooms and let the real-time fly during the debate and you can have a debate of your own or a real solid conversation with other like minded people.

This scenario can be used for almost anything: a convention, sports broadcast, company meeting…you name it!

UPDATE: A FriendFeed chat room has been setup already for just that…chatting.

UPDATE 2: The debate just started and the real-time feed (mine at least) went silent.  Maybe people are using the debate rooms properly after-all.

Real-Time with List

FriendFeed introduced list a few weeks ago allowing users to organize the people they are subscribed to into specific groups.  This feature was extremely useful and a few people have written about their tactics for using them successfully.  The common theme has been to ensure you don’t miss post from certain individuals.  Open up the live stream for this list, and leave it running in a mini window, and you are set.  You’ll never miss a thing they say again (assuming you are at your computer 24/7).

Major props to the FriendFeed team for implementing this feature.  I’m going to have to play around with FriendFeed in real-time a bit more and figure out the best way to use it and FriendFeed going forward.  Work can wait…

You can find me on FriendFeed here if you are interested.

Till next time…

UPDATE: Louis Gray got is word in about the new real-time feature and made me realize I totally forgot to mention search and keyword filtering.  If FriendFeed were to integrate searching for keywords in real-time on the mainfeed, this feature would be extremely useful.

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Categorized: The Social Web