I was looking through posts by my Pownce friends today and found someone was complaining about people testing posting from Ping.fm, so I had to check it out. The idea is a simple one — that posting the same thing to multiple sites would grow tedious and ping.fm would help alleviate this issue. Setting up an account is no hassle at all and configuring your accounts is as simple as putting in your login information. Hooking up my Facebook profile took a little more, but it’s just a matter of an application being installed.
After configuring my Facebook, Pownce and Tumblr accounts it was time to test it out. You can post from the site directly and by default, messages go to all services you enable which can be good and bad. While I may have no problem blasting the same thing to Pownce, Jaiku and Twitter, I really classify my Facebook status updates as being totally different and personal, not to mention something I post for Tumblr may end up being too many characters for Facebook. Also with Facebook, messages still stupidly have your name at the very beginning of messages, so posting “I had a great chicken sandwich for dinner.” still gives you “Evan I had a great chicken sandwich for dinner.” It’s pretty annoying for the OCD grammar Nazis like myself who want Facebook status updates to appear in proper English.
The site does accept what it calls “triggers” which is a way to post to specific services using a code to prefix a message, such as @fb to update just Facebook and none of your other services. So, using the @fb trigger and editing your messages to accommodate your name at the beginning of updates is one workaround to the problem mentioned in the paragraph prior.
Sure, the site is trying to save you time by letting you post directly to different services from their site, but what if you don’t want to be on the ping.fm site at all? You can email updates to a personalized email address you get with your account instead. Even better, I used the AIM bot, adding the contact to my AIM buddies in Digsby, sending the verification code in an IM and instantly I could update Tumblr, Pownce and my Facebook status from within an IM chat. Given the time it would save to go to the different sites individually, this is a welcome addition to my work flow. My only suggestion/problem is that I would really like to edit the “triggers” to whatever I want, allowing me to make specific triggers to go to only Tumblr and Pownce as well as editing the triggers that go for Jaiku, etc.
Speaking with Sean over at Ping.fm I’ve been told that we can look out for an Adobe AIR application, as well as possible Mac and Vista widgets. (I’ve had nothing absolutely confirmed.) Even if they do get around to doing these things, I’m so far happy with just the IM bot but with Pownce I can only post messages, not reply to messages or see other posted messages, all things I can do with the official Pownce AIR client.
If you’re into the Jaiku/Twitter/Pownce/No Social Interaction thing you may want to give this a try, and we got you covered. When signing up, use the code ‘uneasysilence‘ to get into the beta. Invites are limited, so act fast and let us know what you think in the comments.