I was thinking about it today, and realized that I’m active on a ridiculous number of social media networks. I’ve got Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Friendfeed, YouTube, and more – I’d get exhausted if I went through them all.
Though each application is improving, and has its own lures and reasons to use, keeping track of them all is hard. It’s a lot of different places to check, a lot of information to consume, and a lot of work to stay active on all the various sites.
After a few hours of using Skimmer, though, my social media life appears to have just become much less complicated.
Skimmer is an Adobe AIR app, for Windows or Mac OS, that consolidates all of your social media and lifestreaming tools into one easy-to-use application, with a bunch of other neat features to boot.
When you first install the application, you’re presented with a window to log into your various accounts – Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, and Blogger. First, though, you have to register with Skimmer (which consists solely of entering an email and password, once each). Enter your log-in credentials for your networks, or click “Authenticate” for Facebook and Flickr – they have their own methods of linking your account.
Once you’ve got all the accounts linked to Skimmer, you’ll see the Everything Feed, as I like to call it. It’s got all your updates from the various networks in one place, all within one feed. Information comes chronologically, with the most recent stuff first, and with the service listed right next to the update. For me, Twitter somewhat dominated the stream, but it’s all in there.
If the whole stream’s a bit overwhelming, you can filter by service, if you want to make sure not to miss something from Facebook or Flickr. You can also create groups of your friends, family, co-workers, or whatever, and filter out only their updates (still across all services).
If you click on the “What are you doing right now?” text at the top of the window, Skimmer lets you update Twitter and Facebook, either one at a time or both at once. With Twitter, you can reply or message people directly from their updates in the feed, by hovering over their profile picture. It’s a fairly full-featured Twitter client, if nothing else. But there’s a lot else.
On the left side, there’s a sidebar, with several links in it – mine shows “Feed,” “Flickr,” “YouTube,” and “Logout.” The first and last are fairly obvious, the middle two pretty cool. Flickr lets you see your photostream, with views and comments for each photo, as well as a link to view the photo on Flickr. YouTube shows you your YouTube channel, with similar information for Flickr.
With each service, you can also see the latest from the people you’re connected to, and even upload a video or photo using the “Upload” link at the bottom left of the page.
All the media in Skimmer is totally in-line – you can see photos, videos, and more all within the Skimmer application without opening another window. That’s great particularly for Flickr, YouTube and Twitter, where tons of content is passed around, from a variety of sources – you can see it all within Skimmer.
If you want to, you can create a Skimmer profile to share with the world – this acts as an aggregator of your accounts, and something of a lifestream site of your own. It’s not a necessary step, and one I didn’t take, but it’s there if you want it. Skimmer makes it easy to share your profile with other Skimmer users, too, polling your contact lists in the various applications to see who else you know that’s using Skimmer.
Skimmer, for me, will really take off when it supports even more applications – Friendfeed, for starters. But already, it’s a great place to aggregate some of the social media sites you use most, and keep tabs on both what you’re creating and sharing, and what your friends are up to. It’s a simple, gorgeous app that may start to steal time from some other similar apps I already use.
How do you control your lifestreaming and social media?
Photo: Matt Hamm