Tagged With online identity

Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.

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If you're not actively building your identity and establishing a presence online, you're letting search engines cobble together information, good or bad, and write your public story. You need to establish and maintain a healthy online identity.

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These days performing a vanity search of your own name isn't just about vanity, it's good to know how future employers and dates that Google-stalk you will see you. WebMii can help you get a picture of your online image.

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Expect to see a whole lot more of Google and Facebook sign-in boxes on sites all over the web from today going forward: in what you'd think was a planned parallel announcement, Google and Facebook just launched their Friend Connect and Facebook Connect products today, which allow web site owners to set up sign-in and other social features to their web sites. All your online identity are belong to Google or Facebook? Tell us in the comments, and see a video demo of Google's Friend Connect here.

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New web service Nombray is out to help folks establish their online identity by registering their name-based domain. Enter your name into the Nombray search engine and register the various available combinations of vanity URL available. (For example, a search for my name returns GinaTrapani.name, GinaTrapani.us, GTrapani.com, etc.) Then, register the URLs of your choice for $US20 apiece, and use Nombray's simple web page designer and hosting service to link to the various social networks and profiles you've set up across the web. (See CEO Chris Lunt's Nombray-powered chrislunt.net site above for an example, where Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are linked from tabs in a top frame.)

Nombray

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Sometimes you like a photo so much, you want to post it to Facebook, Flickr, and all your other Web 2.0-type identities. Media sharing web app Oosah (a strong contestant for weirdest web app name so far) has opened up a new feature that makes trading a digital photo or other media files between Flickr, Facebook, Picasa, and other social sites pretty easy. After signing up and confirming logins, you can simply upload to Oosah or drag a file from one web app to the other, saving you the time of multiple uploads. If you're going to spend valuable work time sharing your latest photo journey, you may as well hit at as many outlets at once as possible. Oosah is free to use, requires a sign-up to activate.

Oosah

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Web site IdentiFight searches popular web applications for accounts linked to an email address you specify. The main purpose of IdentiFight is to show you what information is available online to anyone who has your email address, then to help you cut the connection between your address and that info when possible. Keep in mind that you'll need to submit your email address to IdentiFight to run the search, and there's always the possibility that IdentiFight is doing some malicious email harvesting itself, but from all appearances, the creator seems genuine. As always, submit your email with caution. If you do give it a try, share what you found—and whether or not you were surprised with the results—in the comments.

IdentiFight

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Are you happy with the results people get back when they Google your name? If not, there are easy ways to monitor and guide what information is published about you online. Two years ago we covered how to have a say in what Google says about you, and more recently, and how to track down anyone online. But a rash of social media sites have arisen that give you more tools to help you manage your online reputation and become more findable. Let's take a look.

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A few months ago, 43 Folders writer Matt Wood realized he was running five blogs, two Flickr accounts, a del.icio.us page, and a regular stream of Twittr, IM, and email messages. This year, he's resolved to trim his online "commitments," and he offers a few tips on how anyone can do the same. Wood recommends casting a hard, cold gaze at your online activities for the sake of prioritizing, one login at a time:

Take baby steps - Chances are there's one online outlet that you know you just don't have the heart to maintain anymore, be it a blog, Twitter, Facebook, whatever. Drop one of them, then see if any other candidates fall to the bottom by attrition.

If you were committed to canning one of your online outlets to stay better focused, where would you start? Share your executioners' tales in the comments. Photo by Kevin.

Re-evaluating Your Online Commitments

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When you're trying to find someone online, Google's not the only game in town. In the last two years, a handful of new people search engines have come onto the scene that offer better ways to pinpoint people info by name, handle, location, or place of employment. While there's still no killer, one-stop people search, there are more ways than ever to track down a long-lost friend, stalk an ex, or screen a potential date or employee. The next time you wonder, "What ever happened to so-and-so?" you've got a few power people search tools to turn to.