Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Socialverse - potentially yelp meets SL

Socialverse is a new networking tool that is not quite be off its feet yet, but I see some potential for creativity. Basically you've got an avatar who can roam through several cities on earth. Businesses, schools, hospitals, etc., which exist in real life, are located along the streets and these can be reviewed/updated/slightly modified by anyone.

My idea was to explore if Socialverse could be a place where public health clinics and testing sites list them selves and then are open to public review just like the rest of the businesses. Of course there's Yelp for this as well, but the map integration is nice. If you go up to a business, perhaps a representative could (sometimes) be there to tell you more about it using the chat function?

Socialverse is in beta (very much so), so there are issues. Mainly, things needs to be able to be individualized. I couldn't tweak my avatar much or change my clothes. Also, a lot of the buildings look the same. There would have to be a critical mass contributing to the building of cities to really get this going. Also, the purpose is a bit nebulous. Would I go here to find out about cafes in my neighborhood, or to chat with other avatars also wearing blue jeans and white t-shirts?

Here is a basic demo:

When I mentioned my clinic idea to Chad from Socialverse he said: "If you have any suggestions for features that you think of, particularly those that could be of benefit for clinics, please let me know and we'd be more than happy to work with you or anyone else in your industry to try and implement them. We have created Socialverse to be very flexible as to what it can support, including a complex "class" based system of "things" and "places". For example, in Socialverse a "clinic" is a class. And we can custom tailor each class to fit the particular informational and service needs of that class or industry."

I guess we can wait and see.

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