Google Friend Connect

Google Press Center: News Announcement: "Websites that are not social networks may still want to be social -- and now they can be, easily. With Google Friend Connect, any website owner can add a snippet of code to his or her site and get social features up and running immediately without programming -- picking and choosing from built-in functionality like user registration, invitations, members gallery, message posting, and reviews, as well as third-party applications built by the OpenSocial developer community."

Google Friend Connect

Google Confirms Friend Connect

I was able to talk with Google engineering director David Glazer to get some more details. The point of Friend Connect, he says, is to “, give users a shortcut to connections they’ve built up somewhere else.” So if you go to a Website that is part of Friend Connect, you will be able to sign in under your Facebook, Google Talk, hi5, Orkut, or Plaxo IDs

The bigger downside of Friend Connect is that Websites using it cannot mash up the data with their own to make compelling new applications. Glazer confirmed that the data will be sent to third party sites via an iframe rather than directly through a set of APIs (as Michael speculated on Friday).

Google Friend Connect Previews Tonight

The user experience is simple. When a user comes to a site in the Friend Connect program they can sign into any social network that is sharing their data. Their data is not actually shared with the site. Impressively Google is supporting OpenID and OAuth in addition to their own standard OpenSocial.

Google Friend Connect Tries to Strangle the Social

Those hard questions are the ones that these companies are supposed to be working on together through the Data Portability Working Group, though. The Group has published best practices documents tackling a number of difficult questions already.

Welcome to the social mess?

Google Friend Connect, Facebook Connect, MySpace Data Availability, OpenID, DataPortability: Managing a bunch of different log-ins and passwords suddenly seems easy and straightforward.

Heh, Interop dead. Backlash at 11.

Now we need a WWE-style smackdown between the beasts ...

Interesting times ...

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