Facebook messages gets an overhaul

The message system in Facebook is set to get a major overhaul. The new system aims to integrate all of your emails and instant messages with your Facebook friends into a single “inbox,” which Lifehacker has dubbed “one inbox to rule them all.” Instead of being sorted by subject, the new inbox will be sorted by person – what Facebook is calling the “social inbox” – the idea being to make your conversations with someone easier to find.

But Facebook are also stressing that their new message system isn’t just email – though you can still set it up to receive messages from contacts outside of Facebook – but a new way of envisaging and organising your written communications with your friends. It will be interesting to see what kind of take up this new message system has.

You can have a look at a few of the new features of Facebook’s new messaging system here and take a tour via video.

Facebook reaches the 6 year mark

From humble beginnings, built to keep friends in touch during university, Facebook has grown exponentially and is part of life for millions of people around the globe. This great graphic, created for Mashable, gives an overview of Facebook facts and figures.

Visualising 6 years of Facebook

Waving not drowning

So, a few of us have been having a play with Google’s latest toy, Google Wave. We’re wondering how it might shake things up in the library world. Once it’s released from it’s initial test phase (which, apparently, has already grown to include 1 million users!), it looks like it will be able to offer an environment that facilitates virtual collaboration for libraries and their community of users though instant messaging, email and the ability to share links and files. Libraries are already involved in undertaking similar initiatives such as AskNow which is hosted by the National Library of Australia.

There are a few interesting applications already out there which could be useful for this kind of collaboration, such as bots which allow you to search Amazon, search for ISBNs to retrieve cover art (though this is currently limited to O’Reilly titles) and even Igor, a citation bot. You can watch Igor in action here (though there’s no sound).

Interested and want to get a piece of the action? You can sign up for a Google Wave invite here or, failing that, beg one of your hip techy friends for an invite ;-)

But the big question is, will the Wave dance will catch on?

Welcome to the Internet age

Where the average U.S. citizen spends up to 68 hours per month using the Internet both at home and at work (with almost 5 and a half hours spent using Facebook),  a statistic that is rapidly catching up to TV viewing time.

Where there were approximately 8.4 million active internet subscribers in Australia (as at the end of June 2009, according to the ABS).

Where broadband access has been declared a legal right in Finland, with providers having to supply all users with access speeds of at least 1 Mbps, with the aim of increasing speeds up to 100 Mbps by 2015.

What’s next for connectivity? How else will Internet usage impact on our habits and lifestyles?

Waves in motion

Having briefly looked at Google Wave, it’s been interesting to follow conversations happening with people who are currently using the beta version and to get a bit of a look in to what people are envisaging they might be able to use Google Wave for.

I’m looking forward to getting to grips with this emerging technology when it finally surfaces from betadom.

What is Web 2.0?

This video has been around for a while but it nicely sums up some of the underlying ideas of Web 2.0, as well as hinting at the kinds of issues that new developments in technology will bring. I particularly like the video’s distinction between form and content – RDA eat your heart out!

Presentation developed by Dr. Michael Wesch, Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Digital Ethnography, Kansas State University