Friday, February 20, 2009

Not Strictly Related, But….

…Has anyone else heard of this Facebook thing?

I’ve been resisting, because I’ve seen it suck the productivity right out of stronger people than myself. But I finally succumbed, and whoa, Nellie, is it ever a time waster. I was right about that.

But it’s also a fabulous tool for reconnecting with people, and for all those who pooh-pooh electronic communication as superficial, I submit that I have known my friend Lisa for 12 years, and we just now realized that we share a fanaticism for the band Squeeze. We figured this out not through a face-to-face conversation, but because in my Facebook profile I’d marked myself as a fan of the band’s lead singer.

So that’s my story and I’m sticking to it; that there is some socially redeeming value to all the time I now spend on this site.

Some of the site’s features are a little harder to justify, but they are undeniably fun. One feature lets you put virtual pins on a world map to show where you’ve been. You can share your map with your friends and see where your friends have been. I’m pleased to discover that I’m the only one of us who has visited Mongolia, but my African and South-East Asian experience (zilch) does not come close to measuring up to my peers.

As if that’s not enough, the map page also comes with a link to a geography game. I’ve played an online game like it before, but this one gives you a score in the form of a “travel IQ.” Mine was a slightly disappointing 111, but I’m just getting my mouse warmed up. I know I can do better next time. It’ll just take a minute…

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