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Saved by Chris Messina
on March 25, 2010 at 2:55:32 pm

Welcome to the ActivityStreams Community Wiki

This wiki is the central repository which supports the specification process. The wiki documents the discussions which led us to select certain nomenclature, properties and best practices for the exchange of activities, as well as a list of examples in the wild, current implementations and future plans to extend the specification.

Problem Statement

The ActivityStreams effort is designed to address the fact that sites like Gowalla and Foursquare (and others!) provide data feeds of social activities on their site in two formats: Atom and RSS. These formats are simple and easy to work with, but don't capture the richness of the original activity.

This problem is exacerbated by the size and diversity of social sites now proliferating. The rise of these sites and the burden they place on social aggregators leads to what we call "The Friendfeed Problem", where it becomes increasingly costly to support each new service that enters the market. Indeed, before Friendfeed was acquired by Facebook, it supported a total of 58 services:

FriendFeed - Add/Edit Services

In order for Friendfeed to add support for new services, the Friendfeed developers would need to actually manually add support for new services (like Gowalla and Foursquare, which aren't currently supported). If Friendfeed supported the ActivityStreams format, this situation could be avoided.

The activity in ActivityStreams is a description of an action that was performed (the verb) at some instant in time by someone or something (the actor) against some kind of person, place, or thing (the object). There may also be a target (like a photo album or wishlist) involved.

The stream in ActivityStreams is a feed of related activities for a given person or social object.

Put together, ActivityStreams is a convenient and consistent way to syndicate social activities around the web.

For a broader high level overview of the concepts, take a look at these presentations.



Currently we are working on producing the first version the activity streams specification. The goal of this first version of the specification is to act as the baseline and allow development against an official version of the spec.

We will continue to iterate on more verbs and object types and welcome your input.

Getting started with activity streams

About Activity Streams

Upcoming Events

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