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(Pocket-lint) - Microsoft's new social network/picture sharing project, So.cl, is now open for everybody to try. Still in beta, it may not offer all the features that might come with a full public release, but already people are signing up in droves.

The website currently at beta.so.cl has been open for invited testers for a year, but Microsoft clearly believes it is stable enough for mass consumption.

It is a way of sharing common interests through pictures, video or news stories. For example, you can post updates on your life, including images in the same way as Facebook and a multitude of other social networks offer. You could also choose to just type a subject heading in the Bing search bar and post a collection of related images, videos or news content.

It came about as a working concept by Microsoft's FuSE labs, who really wanted to see how people would use such a tool. It wasn't designed to be a rival to Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter or the like, but, to be honest, does seem to be used in similar fashions by the public.

You can head over to the site now and sign in through either Facebook or your Microsoft account. It's fascinating just to see the randomness of the posts flashing past.

Writing by Rik Henderson.