Microsoft's 'secret' social network not so secret any more

Redmond seems to be cooking up a social network/search hybrid after all. Welcome to its Google+ killer, social -- er, socal -- no, Socl

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Also, in a rather bizarre addition, Socl will let you create "video parties" where you and your Socl pals can all sit around and watch the same videos at your respective screens. Because that's exactly how I want to spend my time.

Assuming this service is not just another one of the 29,863 research projects Microsoft funds and then kills before it's released, Socl looks to be clearly aimed at the mobile future more than the desktop/laptop present. Microsoft desperately needs something to keep it in the mobile search and networking game before it disappears entirely.

According to Houston, you may soon have a chance to try out Socl for yourself: "Microsoft is nearing the end of its private testing period and will roll this out to a bigger public audience through an invite system."

He doesn't attribute this to a source or say how he knows this. Maybe one of his Socl pals told him.

Would you use a social network owned by Microsoft? And would you pronounce socl as "social" or "socal"? Post your thoughts below or email me: cringe@inforworld.com.

This article, "Microsoft's 'secret' social network not so secret any more," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the crazy twists and turns of the tech industry with Robert X. Cringely's Notes from the Field blog, and subscribe to Cringely's Notes from the Underground newsletter.

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