I got an email yesterday with a list of new features added to Profilactic. I hadn’t visited the site for a while so I decided to go play around with my profile and see what has changed.
Overall they’ve really cleanup up and organized the UI quite a bit. First order of business was to fix my distorted profile image. I had to do some image edit magic so that my photo wasn’t distorted by their forced 85×85 pixel aspect ratio. Not a biggie…but no need to mess up my mug. I also added my local timezone which is a nice touch to sync my feeds correctly.
Next up was to work with my Lifestream sources. This area had been totally revamped since my last visit. They have great support for many common sites available from a dropdown where you then simply supply your username (except for Flickr & Facebook which require Id’s) and voila, feed added. An added feature is the ability to roll up feeds under a parent. This is useful if you have multiple accounts at a site that you want to include. You also have the ability to add custom sites not available in the common set so you can add your personal blog as well as other niche sites to your Lifestream.
The ability to provide a label to describe the custom added feeds is nice. For the custom sites they provide a default (profilactic branded) icon. I would much rather have them pull the favicon from the default location of the feed’s domain if available or allow me to upload my own. I really like the icons as a visual queue within a Lifestream. since they also provide a badge for your profiles, this would be another benefit.
The next area I wanted to explore was adding friends and the features available along the Friendstreaming area. So I used the “Find People” search, but had a pretty hard time locating friends that I was pretty sure were users. Turns out the problem was related to the searches being on their user names and not real names. I think it would be nice to be able to allow user profiles to provide real names and then expand search to include that in the query. I can’t keep up with all the pseudonames my friends use.
I did however start doing broad alpha searches which allowed me to find my friends. Once added you have a tab on your menu titled “Friend’s Mashup”. This provides an aggregated view of all your Friendstreams on one page. You can then filter by individual friends using a dropdown menu which also provides you with the number of items available next to each friend’s username. You can also search for content with the complete Friendstream or the single user filtered version.
Lastly, they’ve added some very nice badges that allow you to take both your profile information as well as your Lifestream and place them on your own sites. You can take a look at my account examples for both below:
Overall I am very impressed with how far Profilactic has come along as of late and see them as one of the top sites to be used as a Lifestreaming platform. I look forward to following them over the next few months.
That covers most of what the features I was looking to test out. I have also now added Profilactic to my Lifestream Services Comparison Grid so go take a look and see how they stack up.
Here’s a summary of new features provided from their site:
You can now take your Mashup content with you by copying and pasting a code snippet into your blog or website. The badge displays your most recent 7 Mashup items. See a sample in the right column of my blog.
2. Clippings – Mashup integration
That’s a fancy way of saying that, when you add a clipping to Profilactic, that will be noted in your mashup.
3. Support for timezones
You can now specify which timezone you will live in. This is useful for getting all of your mashup entries, especially from sites like twitter or Jaiku, to have the right timestamp. You can set your timezone on your Edit Profile page.
Of course, because we’re crafty, we also added a little code that will look at what timezone your computer is set to. If you don’t set the timezone yourself, we’ll take our best guess at it.
4. Improved Mashup and Clippings display
We made a few tweaks to the fonts and styles that control the Mashup and Clippings pages. The new pages are easier to read and scan.
5. Default favicon
If you add a custom site, we now have a default favicon that will get display next to the site name. This is a minor tweak; however, it makes the Where to Find Me Online list look better.
6. Loading indicator on Set up Sites page
We added a loading cursor to the Set up Sites page. Again, this isn’t a huge deal; however, it is a helpful feedback mechanism as you are adding sites to your profile.
We also added basic support for Facebook. You can now add your Facebook profile and get your Mini-Feed imported into your Mashup. It is the first of several things we have planned for Facebook. The next one, of course, will be our Facebook app.
More on Facebook integration: