There are many existing apps/websites that can help you connect with people who share similar interest already, but I find them a little difficult to use sometimes. When I say difficult, I don’t mean their interface is ugly or user experience is bad, I mean I usually have to spend time filling out long surveys so that the app is able to match me with people who fill in similar stuff in the survey, or I have to spend a lot of time keep swiping people’s profiles, tell the app whether I like the person or not and wait to be matched that way.
Finally, you are matched with someone that can potentially become your new friend, but here comes the even more difficult part! How do you start the conversation, which topic to talk about? You are very lucky if you know you guys are matched together because you both love a specific movie or song, but is that the topic that both of you want to chat about at this very moment? The conversation becomes very difficult even awkward when you feel you must say something, because you know you have a mission, which is to make new friends or start a new relationship. I’m sure everybody has experienced this before and it just feels difficult.
That’s why I don’t like these apps, they are just too intentional and there’s no way around it, because it’s in the nature of these apps, as long as you are chatting with people using these apps, you know you are trying to make new friends, your subconscious mind knows that the topics you guys are talking about is less important and the person on the other side of Internet is more important.
Is there a more casual way to make new friends on the Internet? With this in mind, in my spare time, I wrote a Chrome extension that allows people to chat with others who are visiting the exact same web page. This way they don’t need to worry about which topic to talk about because they can just chat about the content of the web page they are both looking at. If they enjoy talking with each other, they become friends naturally and they can decide if they want to keep the friendship only in this Chrome extension or they can exchange their email address, phone number or even meet in the real world.
With this extension, making friends should be a casual and relaxing experience, because the main focus of the extension is to help you find others to chat about the content of a web page, making friends just happen naturally as you chat, and I think that’s the more comfortable way.
The app is published but still WIP, so please feel free to give me any suggestions!