Feeds

Microsoft's social lab does 'the impossible'

The, er, personal Tweetbook index

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Web 2.0 Expo Microsoft has unveiled an experimental online service that pools "social" content from various and sundry online sources, including Facebook, Twitter, RSS feeds, and Redmond's own Bing search engine.

Developed by Microsoft's Future Social Experiences (FUSE) Labs - the research outfit launched by Ray Ozzie last fall - the service is officially known as Spindex. But FUSE general manager Lili Cheng likes to call it "the impossible project".

Cheng unveiled the service on Tuesday afternoon at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco, and though we're not quite sure what the impossible bit is all about, we can report that Spindex is an effort to provide netizens with a kind of uber content feed they can customize according to their particular social obsessions.

Before unveiling Spindex, Cheng showed off an earlier FUSE Labs project - the Twitter search tool built into Bing - and she pitched Spindex as an antidote to searching the Twitter firehose. "Most people aren't really that interested what everybody else thinks, what's trending on Twitter. What you really care about is what your friends think is interesting, what you think is interesting," she said.

"We've been thinking for a long time about how we could do kind of your own personal index, provide your own personal information that's private, that you can edit and interact with and possibly share with friends."

Yes, she painted the service as a "modern Rolodex".

Currently, Spindex aggregates feeds from Twitter, Facebook, Bing and the online clippings service Everdex. You can track popular topics on these services or set up running queries of your own, and Spindex actively serves up additional information on what your online buddies are rabbiting on about.

"We use smart technology to try to pull information to you that about what the person is saying," Chend said. "To me, this is great, because I have a lot of really smart, much hipper than I am friends, and they're always talking about stuff I don't know what they're talking about."

The service is available as a limited beta at spindex.me, and it requires a Microsoft Live account. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder
And now a message from our sponsors: 'STFU or else'
Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE
Tim Berners-Lee isn't happy, but we should be
Microsoft boots 1,500 dodgy apps from the Windows Store
DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! Naughty, misleading developers!
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Uber, Lyft and cutting corners: The true face of the Sharing Economy
Casual labour and tired ideas = not really web-tastic
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.