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Scheming with Accomplices: The Newest Must-Join Network
By: Melody Weister
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We’ve all been lost at one time or another. In this case, “lost” refers not to difficulty while navigating from point A to point B, but rather the overwhelming sensation upon arriving at point B and realizing that we know nothing about a new area that we have embraced as “home,” or the overwhelming ennui that arises in the middle of the week when it seems as though we’ve run out of fun things to do. Though this can occasionally be alleviated through the use of careful research, conversation with locals, and some apps like FourSquare or Yelp, a unique social-discovery/task-planning network has sprung to the forefront. This new site not only tackles the issue of what a place has to offer, but also provides users with the ability to join in on the plans of friends worldwide. Initially launched by a small team of Google engineers as a closed beta and finally released to the public in the last week, Schemer is the most unique social network to arrive on the scene in years.
The purpose of Schemer, according to their website, is “to help people do fun stuff in the real world.” Their website provides a charming animated introduction to the site and a rundown of all its capabilities for interested parties, and the launch was accompanied by an app for Android — iOS users need not fear; a compatible version will be released on the iTunes store very soon. In general, the site allows users to make lists of “schemes,” which are essentially things that the user wants to do at some point in the future. These ideas range from the extremely specific, like trying a certain drink at a local brewery, to very broad plans, such as getting eight hours of uninterrupted sleep, or reading a new book every month. Users can see their friends’ (or “accomplices,” as Schemer deems them) schemes as well — friends are imported from each user’s Google+ account, a requirement to use the otherwise free service.
What makes Schemer so interesting is the ability to join with others; the potential to suggest an activity that might reach enough people to have an effect similar to that of the anti-SOPA/anti-PIPA Internet blackout that happened earlier this year. Once some of the minor bugs in the system are worked out — and with the site barely out of closed beta, some bugs are to be expected — like not being able to add locations to Schemes via the Android app, Schemer has the potential to be the next big thing in the world of social networks. Though prospective users might at first be apprehensive about the popularity of this app, companies like IGN, NPR, Bravo television network, and Rolling Stone magazine are already members of Schemer, all of them regularly posting localized suggestions for users. Also, if users have multiple parties interested in carrying out a certain goal, the “Rally” feature can be used to gather everyone together to join in at a certain time and date.
With personalized recommendations based on location, time of day, and even the weather, Schemer truly lives up to its tagline as “the beginning of everything worth doing.” Curiosity piqued? Get Scheming and see for yourself!

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About the Author
Melody Weister is a technology aficionado, unashamed smartphone geek, and casual gamer from Montclair, NJ, where she works as a Social Media Coordinator. Follow her on Twitter: @msmelodyrose.
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