Stacy's Favorite Freeware: Me.dium - A Revolution in Social Networking
|Published:||Aug 6, 2007|
Here's a little something that will change the way people surf the Internet in the future. By "a little something," I mean it might be small in file size, but it's big as far as brilliant concepts go. And by "change" I really mean revolutionize and by "future" I mean right here and now and from hence forth! It's called Me.dium, a sidebar addon for Firefox, Flock, and Internet Explorer that allows it's users to interact with each other in real time!
Me.dium is a revolutionary way to interact with others who are surfing the Internet at the same time you are. With Me.dium's Social Exploration Environment (SEE) you can "see" other people online. The installed addon provides an animated interface with shifting icons that represent the sites other Me.dium users are visiting. Though you may not know all of the people that show up in your map, those users are visiting similar sites to the one you are visiting, or their activity is related to yours. This provides you with a bountiful and eclectic resource of fresh, relevant content and information recommended by users like you and delivered elegantly, instantaneously, through Me.dium.
And vice versa, users can see your online activity while you are browsing as well. The wonderful thing about Me.dium is that you can choose to be as private or public as you want to be. The only exception to that, of course, would be that your private information will always remain private. For instance, if you visit a site that requires a password, like a webmail account, your activity will be hidden for the duration of your visit. Otherwise, sharing your online browsing activity is as easy as clicking a button (or pressing CTRL+SHIFT+M). Suspending activity sharing is just as easy.
Here is a shot of the Social Exploration Environment as it appears in the side bar:
Additionally, Me.dium has included a chat client within the side bar, so you can easily rap with your buddies or strike up a conversation with someone new who's enjoying the same site as you! It's uses are seemingly endless... Me.dium is more than just a great way to share time with long-distance friends and family! Perhaps you're a teacher who would like an easy way to monitor classroom activity. Or maybe you'd like to present online material to a computer lab full of students and receive instant feedback! Parents can keep track of a child's online activity in real-time. Using Me.dium at the office or on a home network can be a lot of fun too! Keep up with current Web memes, form special interest groups, find new blogs, make new friends!
Speaking of blogs, here's something else that's sure to impress all you bloggers out there: the newly developed, Me.dium Widget! With the insertion of just one line of code, you can see the real-time online activity of the Me.dium community who visits your site, allowing you to interact with your users in a whole new way! I have installed the widget so you can see it in action below:
It's a beautiful concept; people from all over the world with similar interests communicating and sharing the web together at the same time. Like any social network, it's always more fun when your friends and family participate too, and the folks at Me.dium have made it easy for you to invite people you know by importing your contacts from sites like Gmail, Facebook, MySpace, AOL, Yahoo! etc.. This advancement in social networking is definitely something you'll want to be a part of. It's safe - all browser communication is encrypted with 128-bit SSL. It's powerful. It's brilliant. And it's free! If you're anxious to learn more about Me.dium, you can find a quick animated tutorial here: link. Once you download Me.dium and get it installed and running, don't forget to look me up! My username is stacyreed. I'll look for you there!
Stacy Reed is Tucows' resident software librarian and editor. She has been reviewing PC and mobile software as well as web services for over a decade. Helping developers improve and promote their products is only one of her areas of expertise. Stacy is also an advocate for Open Source, Creative Commons and freeware, taking special interest in educational resources, social media, cloud sharing, and mobile technology.