(source: Springwise)

CommunityLend is “an online community where people lend money directly to other people. (…)You can set your own rates, payback periods and meet some cool people along the way…”

I love the sound of this, and I’m very glad it’s made its way to Canada. Peer-to-peer lending “banks” been launched in Holland and Germany and, it seems, with some success. In the Netherlands, Guus Drijver, founder of the unfortunately named Boober, says: “Boober doesn’t work with hidden costs and is completely transparent. We don’t sponsor yacht races or soccer teams, and don’t have expensive headquarters or pay thousands of people high salaries.” Amen, brother.

In “the next few months”, CommunityLend will be launching what the are calling a “test phase” where you can “set up profiles, manage loans, bid on auctions and create groups without using real money”.

I can hardly wait.

The Human Network

Just to follow up my last post, I should point you at Cisco’s site The Human Network.

Welcome to a place where we’re all connected.
Where remote villages are included. And your PDA is a stadium seat. Where home videos are experienced everywhere at once. And Web applications mash together to create new experiences. On the human network, wonderful things are happening everywhere.
Join us as we work, live, play and learn on the human network. Visit collaborative sites, share network stories, hear podcasts and watch videos, even contribute your thoughts to the human network Wikipedia definition.
Together, we are more powerful than we ever could be apart.
welcome to the human network.

There’s not a lot of buzz about it that I’ve seen yet. I wonder if that’s because people don’t take Cisco seriously in this space? Maybe everyone’s waiting to see what comes next. I know I’m curious…

Socially Networking

Visualization of a Community
Originally uploaded by DC Rob.

According to an article in the NY Times, to follow up on their purchase of Five Across, Cisco is purchasing Tribe.net. It looks like they think that “social” networking with and among customers will become a standard part of corporate infrastructure. Fancy that. Marc Andreesen says this: “The idea that Cisco is going to be a force in social networking is about as plausible as Ning being a force in optical switches.”

messy times
Originally uploaded by el frijole.

I’m not sure if I would go that far, given Cisco’s resources, but his point has some validity. There’s not a lot of ordinary people in the circles that Cisco typically runs in. Still, it looks to me that they’ve recognized that the networks that really matter to most companies are made of people, not machines. Good for them. Interesting times…