Face to face to Facebook
Kris Lee missed her 10-year high school reunion. She graduated in 1988 as part of one of the largest classes in the province, nearly 1,000 students from Centennial in Coquitlam. She didn't get a notice about the reunion until a friend drove past the school and saw the billboard outside when it was already too late.
Now, as plans for her 20th reunion get put in motion, Kris won't be missing it - she's helping to organize it, and with the help from a little tool called Facebook, hopefully no names will be left off the invite list.
With social networks, reconnecting with long lost friends is easier. Once you add all your immediate circle, the next Facebook step is to dig up your yearbooks and enter every single name you recognize to sleuth and snoop to see what they're up to.
"Some people just want to know what you're doing, just to see if they've one upped you. But for people who really want to reconnect with friends, it gives you an avenue," says Kris. "I've already used it to meet with Joanne, the head of the committee, who was my locker partner in Grade 11!"
Some may think social networks ruin all the good surprises a reunion can bring, but not for Rob McMahon. "It's kinda made me interested in going to my reunion next year," he says.
Using the Internet worked for Tyler Ingram's reunion. "Facebook made it easier in getting in touch with people for our highschool reunion," he says. "The turn out was great."
In addition to using Facebook as a way to find names and e-mail addresses, the grad committee also has a Facebook group for the Centennial Class of '88. Already about 20 per cent of the class has joined.
"It's opened it up to tons of photos. I'm sure there's some photos that a lot of people aren't happy with," Lee laughs.
Tanya Davis agrees that Facebook acts as a good research tool, but it can't be used to replace the real life reunion.
"Just because I can see people digitally, it doesn't mean we're really interacting," she says. "In real life is the ONLY way to go. No comparison, for me."
Facebook isn't only a good research tool for the organizers, but the attendees as well. You can reconnect with your old pals and get some of the small talk out of the way.
"If I'm chatting with you at the reunion, half of it might be about school and all those stupid things, but we're not going to really get personal," says Kris. "Where you can find out more information than I would ever have time to tell you in person at a reunion, which is kind of frightening, is on Facebook."
Full details and links at: cyberbuzz.com
CLASS OF CENTENNIAL
If you're a member of Centennial's Class of '88 and haven't been Facebooked yet, head on over to Centennial88.v3.ca for info on your reunion. Tickets are $30 and get you (no spouses allowed) into the fun at Centennial School. If you're Internet-less, you can pick up tickets at the Coquitlam Rec Centre on Aug. 24.
If you don't have an iPhone yet and are still wondering if it's right for you, a little toy called the Samsung Instinct will make its debut tonight at Republic. The phone, being launched this week on the Telus and Bell networks, has a touch screen and many similar features to the iPhone, with a cheaper sticker price.
ABE'S BIG BUYOUT
The big boy Amazon.com has bought Victoria's used-bookseller AbeBooks.com. "As a leader in rare and hard-to-find books, AbeBooks brings added breadth and expanded selection to our customers worldwide," said Russell Grandinetti, of Amazon.com. The estimated $90 million price tag includes provisions to keep the site as a stand alone operation in Victoria.
The Olympics open on Friday, and the games will be revolutionary for online video. The CBC alone has committed more than 1,500 hours to onlinebroadcasting at CBC Sports.ca, complete with a daily highlight package in Mandarin.
The site is only accessible in Canada, so don't expect to see clips on YouTube, as the IOC is expected to vigorously defend rights holders.
STRANDED IN WHISTLER
Techvibes.com had an interesting sidebar to the Sea-to-Sky highway closure this past week. Among those stranded were Firefox developers at Mozilla Summit 2008 in Whistler. Instead of complaining about the closure, David Ascher acted like a true software developer and filed a ticket in regards to the "bug."