The Social Computing Group at Microsoft Research has been working on something interesting called Wallop for quite a while. Still in beta with a small number of testers, Wallop offers photo sharing, blog, and social networking. Very much like Yahoo! 360 but the interface is a whole lot different.
“Wallop is a research project of the Social Computing Group at Microsoft Research, exploring how people share media and build conversations in the context of social networks. We are currently conducting a small, real world trial of Wallop with small friendship groups. Therefore, membership in Wallop is limited to study participants until the trial is over.”
Wallop was introduced in 2003 at the Professional Developers Conference Wallop may have been ahead of it’s time. Here are articles from Microsoft Watch and Wired including screen shots and an interview with Microsoft social computing group researcher Lili Cheng.
Wallop evolved from an earlier Microsoft “virtual worlds” project called HutchWorld.