Integrating with other websites is one area where social networks have a lot of potential. Social networks need to integrate easily with external websites, and get beyond the typical “walled garden” approach of a centralized social network.
A few years ago, Microsoft came out with an authentication service called Passport, a single sign on service for the Internet. Single sign on is nothing new, but Microsoft’s service was heavily criticized.
Now, Facebook provides a single sign on service called Facebook connect, and with the proliferation of Facebook, I think it has a lot of potential. Basically, instead of having a bunch of accounts at a variety of websites, you can just use your Facebook account.
Facebook connect fixes an old problem with blogs, having to create a login for every blog in order to comment. There is already a plugin for WordPress, and I recently installed it on my blog. Simply click the Facebook connect button on the top right corner, and you can comment on my blog with your Facebook account.