There are certainly no shortage of social networks at the moment, but I’ve found a nice home on Jaiku. There are some similarities with Jaiku and Twitter, but once you start to dive into Jaiku, you’ll note that the similarities remain at the surface.
When you visit either the main Jaiku page or a user’s page, you’ll see their availability, location, feeds, friends and a presence or “life” stream. Aside from simply posting a quick snippet on your status you can included feeds from any other source with an ATOM or RSS feed. In my case, I’ve got bookmarks, photos, videos and songs – all automatically posting to my page and informing my friends. This can turn into far more than you might want to be tracking from friends and contacts and Jaiku has also make it very easy to simply remove those updates from your contact’s flow. Jaiku offers a Symbian (S60v3) client and recently released a Widset for J2ME complient devices. Both are quite nice and elegant visually though the Widset offers a great deal more from the Jaiku website – like Channels which I hope will make it into the Mobile client. The Widset also offers a way to comment which is currently lacking in the release version though that should be resolved when the new update comes out next month.
I’ve been testing the Jaiku mobile beta for S60 3rd Edition devices for the past few days and while it’s still definitely a beta product, there are substantial advances here that make Jaiku an even richer experience. Instead of walking you through in words or even a screen-shot tour, I though I’d show you with video…
Before I started using this version of the client, I was only looking for a way to post, but the team has pushed things well beyond that “simple” request and enabled fully threaded discussion tracking. There’s no active notification (sound) yet, but it’s easy to see not only when there’s an update from a friend, but even how mnay have ben posted on a particular thread. You can also surf through an individual contact’s stream or if you prefer browse through your own with friends, which will show you everything that’s happening.
You can reply at any point to any comment or thread which is a killer detail. This enables Jaiku to be a fully interactive experience between participants. Jaiku has been intelligently managing threads and comments on the web, but having this level of control in the palm of your hand completes the experience.