The features, more than a year in the making, are the brainchild of Yahoo Chief Executive Jerry Yang, who previewed them in a keynote speech at the Consumer Electronics Show in January.

Since becoming CEO in June 2007, Yang pushed Yahoo to open up to outside content and to tap into the underlying social connections in its properties.

Yahoo, which is weathering a wrenching downturn including layoffs that began last week, hopes to turn the tide with new features that help its 275 million e-mail users form bonds with friends, colleagues and family to share information and track one another's activities.

Get the full story at the Los Angeles Times