Dirk Olbertz notified me about a preview to the new version of NoseRub at their blog today. For those of you not familiar with NoseRub it’s basically an open source protocol/application written in PHP/MySQL that allows you to create a distributed social network using open standards like OpenID, RSS and FOAF. It is also the platform used to power the Identoo.com Lifestreaming service.
The feature being touted in this new version is the ability to add any url as a contact. From what I can tell, this allows you to add the url of let’s say a friend’s blog and it will then be able to parse all the microformat information available from that site (specifically hCard & XFN data) and then add the streams of data from discovered services automatically creating a Lifestream for them. I’m not positive, but I think that’s what’s going on. It also appears to support adding the url from a user of FriendFeed as well.
Here’s a blurb:
But what really important is, that this is a real distributed social network! And your contacts do not even need to know what NoseRub is. Just add them as your contacts and be able to follow their activities from that moment on. And if you want to, you just install NoseRub on your own server and no one but you has full control over your social network.
You can read the rest on their blog.
It’s nice to see this step towards a truly open framework leveraging open standards. As we see DiSO and DataPortability evolve I’m sure we are going to see more powerful features adopted by sites and services.