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Microsoft has launched another social network today-So.cl, but it doesn’t look like another Facebook or Google+. So.cl (pronounced “social”) is an experimental research project, developed by Microsoft’s FUSE Labs, focused on exploring the possibilities of social search for the purpose of learning.
- So.cl combines social networking and search, to help people find and share interesting web pages in the way students do when they work together.
- So.cl helps you create rich posts, by assembling montages of visual web content.
- To encourage interaction and collaboration, So.cl provides rich media sharing, and real time sharing of videos via “video parties.”
So.cl has been designed for students studying social media to extend their educational experience and rethink how they learn and communicate. They can build posts with many elements—photos, video, text, and more—and share them with colleagues. They also can find students with similar interests and build communities around specific educational goals. So.cl might even give students the ability to create their own social tool, customized for their own community.
Microsoft said in a blog post “There have been social-search projects in the past,” Farnham says, “but they’ve generally focused much more on how to improve the experience of search. In So.cl, there’s a shift in emphasis toward improving collaboration and connecting with other people around common interests.”( Shelly Farnham, a FUSE Labs researcher working on So.cl.)