Thursday, August 13, 2009

Google Gets Social

Google apparently feels a little left out of the social movement and is making moves to rectify that. Google's social network site Orkut has not received wide adoption outside Brazil, so they appear to be turning iGoogle in to a social networking site as another potential inroad into that world.

"Google is ready to open up its iGoogle home page to the social world.

The company is expected to announce Wednesday that gadgets for iGoogle can now take advantage of the Open Social API to build social-networking features into the small little software programs that iGoogle users can use to customize their home pages, according to Marissa Mayer, vice president for search products and experience. For example, gadgets will now be available for Flickr, YouTube, and social games like Scrabble.

Google opened up the Open Social API to iGoogle developers last year, but only in the "sandbox," a protected area for experimentation. If developers like what they see, it could help turn iGoogle from a personalized home page for "tens of millions of users," according to Mayer, into sort of a mini social network.

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