Dream: Unified Online Profile

Problem: 

There’s no such thing as a definitive online profile.  There are countless social networking websites, each with their own rules, agenda, privacy issues, and evolving purpose.  For the less one-stop-shop approach, there are blogs, micro blogs, aggregation services, content management systems, and so many other ways to put your ideas in front of the world.  Each of these offer Web 2.0 interaction, and varying levels of  self- and socially-published personal information.

I author a handful of blogs under different service providers covering various topics.  I’m on Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter as my core social network connections.  I have a Google Profile (that remains largely underutilized).  I’m slowly reviewing movies on Flixster.  I maintain business relationships on LinkedIn (and I was duped into joining Naymz).  I don’t want or expect these to all be tightly integrated with one another or to contain identical information, but the lack of intelligent communication between services is frustrating.  I also fear investing too much time/effort into a single service, since there’s little guarantee what it will be able to offer me even a few months from now.

Digging the hole even a little deeper, there are still a considerable number of people who don’t buy into one or more of these online islands of social interaction.  I could tell someone to look me up on Facebook or Twitter, but my service of choice may be a put-off.  

This all drives me back to one theme: there needs to be a service-agnostic portal where I can direct someone to…and the only requirement should be that they have a web browser and connection to the web.

Solution:

I don’t have one yet.  As far as I can tell, there’s not a readymade solution that meets my needs.  Honestly, this is a core reason why I created this weblog; to hash out my thoughts on how to best make this happen.  Maybe others out there have a similar dream have ideas/advice for my project.

It’s only fair that I mention that up to this point, I’ve failed miserably at solving this problem.  I think it’s because of the many attempts I’ve made in the past…plenty of plans…but nothing sticks.  It seems like I have set a goal every year for the last five years to revamp my online presence to make it accessible and coordinated.  I know it’s an ambitious goal every time I record it in my journal, but it’s important enough that I keep striving for it.

If you care to take a look at what I have put together at this point, check out http://www.matthewcanderson.com/

The best way I know to solve a problem is to start by figuring out what exactly it is that I’m trying to do…so hopefully that can come through as I strive toward this digitalism dream. 

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