July 12, 2008 |
I've been trying out Mixin for a few days now in hopes that it would be a bit easier and more social to use than other calendar options. It's promises of social event planning and schedule sharing had me intrigued. My reaction to actual use of the site is a mixed bag.
Mixin certainly has the social media site look and feel. Unfortunately it went in more the Plurk or MySpace visual direction instead of the more pleasant Twitter, BrightKite or Upcoming direction. This makes it have a disjointed and messy appearance that I found unpleasant to use.
Similar to Plurk, Swurl and other recent social media sites, Mixin has taken a timeline approach to its organization. I am not fond of the timeline – it isn't how I think or visualize my day. Luckily for Mixin they did include a linear view right under the timeline as a companion, which helps people like me see their events laid out in detail.
You can add friends on Mixin similar to other social scheduling and calendar sites. Being able to share your calendar with your friends is an essential feature in this Web 2.0 world, and it is one I liked. However, I didn't like that there was no easy way to pull in friends from other sites like Twitter or Plurk. Mixin does offer Plaxo integration and email importing, but when your email list is as large as mine is, you don't necessarily want to spam it in its entirety with invites. You also don't want to have to manually go through and toggle your invitees on and off.
Your Agenda is able to be viewed publicly, allowing other people in your area to see what's going on in their neck of the woods. They can then become friends with you or subscribe to your agenda to be notified of future planned events.
The Overview and Agenda options show viewers of your profile pretty much the same thing – your schedule over all one week at a time. The people checking out your Agenda can then respond to items by clicking on the smile icons next to each item (giving them a chance to RSVP to an event) or they can hide the event as well. There is also a way to subscribe to the RSS feed of the agenda, a nice way to keep in contact with your friends and keep up on their schedules.
There is also a wish list, called Wishes, where you can list things you'd like to do, like a concert you want to attend in the future, and a Journal of your events and activities. I think Mixin has potential for the same type of user that enjoys Plurk. It doesn't really work for me personally, but it isn't a bad idea over all. I'd like to see them add a way to send your activities to Ping.FM so that you could share them with your friends who aren't on Mixin, and generally make it interact more with other applications.