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Facebook Launches Developer API 30

Posted by timothy
from the web-nine-point-oh dept.
andrewman327 writes "The popular college social networking site Facebook recently unveiled an API open to developers. Programmers can utilize data from profiles, friends, photos, and events. An early example is FaceBank, which allows students to keep track of how much money they have lent their friends. The appeal of this platform will be slightly limited, however, as both developers and users must be members of Facebook. Facebook is the 60th most popular website for American websurfers and recently allowed high school students and employees of certain companies to join."
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Facebook Launches Developer API

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  • I don't know why but the name Facebook just creeps me out. I always imagine a big scrap book full of peeled of faces. Maybe I need to see someone about that..
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Lurker2288 (995635)
      You probably just need to relax a little. Maybe it should rub some lotion on it's skin before it gets the hose again.
  • Take note, Murdoch (Score:5, Informative)

    by mattpointblank (936343) <mattpointblank@nOsPam.gmail.com> on Thursday August 17, 2006 @11:27AM (#15927420) Homepage
    This is a lesson Myspace should learn. I use both sites, and here's why Facebook is better:

    • Actual networking facilities. I'm not sure what the creators of Myspace think "social networking" means, but it definitely _does not_ mean a small box saying "______ is in your extended network" on an area of the profile nobody looks at anyway. And what does that even mean? There's no links to see your "extended network". Facebook, on the other hand, shows you how someone else is linked to you (eg, which of their friends are listed as yours) and lets you narrow down networks by class and college, or graduation year.
    • Intelligent image manipulation. Facebook's gallery features allow you to upload a picture and then select an area of the image "containing" a person, which is then linked to that user's profile when the photo is viewed. On Myspace, you're lucky if the image itself loads.
    • Better relationship definitions. Facebook allows you to specify how you know someone, what classes you took, when you lived together, and even if you're a couple. You can then click links to see your "timeline", showing courses you took, who you took them with, when you lived with people and where, and other stuff. Myspace? "an unknown error has occured".
    • Not owned by News Corp. ...
    • This new API. I can't imagine Myspace opening up any of their information for this kind of thing. I was pleased but not surprised to see stuff about open source on Facebook's new developer section. I can't see Myspace ever embracing any of the OSS concepts.


    What Myspace needs to do is realise that it has more users, more information about them, less specifically linked, so thus it has more potential. They have the ideas (on the School forums they have mostly-unused bulletin boards for craigslist-esque classifieds) but without the implementation, they just look like amateurs.
    • You forgot an important one (to me at least). Everything looks the same. No ugly layouts, no ugly colors, no annoying videos and music, etc.. (granted this is an easy fix in Firefox and Opera with a greasemonkey script)
      • I would still appreciate being able to set 'color schemes' of some kind in facebook, regardless of whether they're only schemes YOU see when you log in, or having users select from a preset series of schemes in order to prevent Color abuse. I could see this becoming very popular with Frats that have certain colors, or if people want a color scheme specific to their school/network.

        I may have to tinker with this API a bit.
    • by Kadin2048 (468275) <[slashdot.kadin] [at] [xoxy.net]> on Thursday August 17, 2006 @12:16PM (#15927823) Homepage Journal
      Also, unlike MySpace, Facebook doesn't give me the urge to go out and stab people for making me try to look at their attempts to write HTML.

      Whoever thought it was a good idea to let regular people design their own webpages needs to be put in front of a monitor, Clockwork Orange-style, and made to look at the results of their handiwork, forever.

      Facebook does it right: you enter your information into little text blocks, and it generates the page. It's easy to search and link, because everything's categorized, and it doesn't encourage homicide.
    • There's only 1 ad on a facebook page, compared to the 10 billion on the horrible myspace pages, nevermind the ads that myspace morons put on their own pages themselves.

      Facebook is actually usable, whereas myspace is probably the worst site on the internet.

      • yeah, gotta admit I love that part.
      • Not to nitpick, but IIRC there are two ads. One on the left under the menu, and one at the bottom of the page. The one on the left can also be bought by users for flyers, and shown to a particular group of people (I think), which is kinda cool. Let's also not forget that Facebook generally loads pretty quickly, whereas MySpace either takes forever or just doesn't load at all.
    • The two sites take a different approach to things. I like to say that Facebook is better when you already have friends, and are using it to foster closer relationships. Myspace is better when you're trying to make friends.

      I'm a bit more wary of Facebook though, it will sell your data to the highest bidder, whereas Myspace has a slightly higher regard for its users privacy.

      • That's true, which is why I say Myspace has the advantage since it enables "networking" in the "meeting new people" sense much more easily than Facebook does. However, as the posters above me have said, the site itself is horrible and doesn't do much to encourage tech-savvy users to stay with it.

        With regards to the security; I am sceptical about Facebook; having heard some CIA link type stuff. On the other hand, Myspace seems much more underhanded (I don't trust News Corp for a second) and some of the stuff
    • by neelm (691182)
      It might be nice to see facebook one day, but until it's open I don't see the point. Last thing I'm going to do is sign up to a facebook / myspace with a work email account - i'll get fired on my own, thank you very much.
  • The API... (Score:2, Funny)

    by Lazbien (788979)
    Oh good... one more reason to return to the site more than the 22 times I do during the day already.
  • An early example is FaceBank, which allows students to keep track of how much money they have lent their friends
    Since we're talking about college students, shouldn't this be "keep track of drug debts and unpaid gambling loans"

A language that doesn't have everything is actually easier to program in than some that do. -- Dennis M. Ritchie

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