They say we should keep our friends close and our frenemies closer, but sometimes, despite our best efforts, we lose a Facebook friend. It can be handy (or infuriating) to know for sure who's left the fold, and until now, there was no good way to … Read more
commentary In the news trade, they call it burying the lede, and yesterday the biggest headline out of Facebook's big developer conference was all but ignored amid the understandable fuss made about open graphs, user timelines, and music sharing in real time.
Little surprise, really. What advantage was there for Mark Zuckerberg to wave a red cape in front of his rivals--current or future? After all, the day was chockablock with meaty announcements and there was enough on the docket to give fans and bloggers enough fodder to chew over for now.
But let's step back and consider … Read more
At the F8 conference yesterday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg showed off some of the most drastic changes ever made to the company's service. And though Zuckerberg is excited by those changes, many folks across the Web aren't so quick to celebrate.
The fear among some users relates to what some say could become a potentially worrisome privacy situation on the social network, led by Timeline and changes to Open Graph.
Timeline provides users with a way to view "the story of your life," according to Zuckerberg, including a collection of all the "stories" uses … Read more
About a year ago I wrote about Facebook's growing dominance of the social Web casting a huge shadow over the Internet of people. At that time the service had 500 million users. In his F8 keynote yesterday, Mark Zuckerberg said that as many as 500 million people used Facebook in a single day, with the total Facebook tribe approaching 800 million.
According to Experian Hitwise, Facebook had a 10 percent share of Internet visits in the U.S. for the week ending Sept. 17, followed by Google at 7 percent. Among social networks, Facebook garnered more than 65 percent … Read more
We knew it was coming. There was no escape. The new Facebook look was unveiled yesterday at the F8 developers conference.
We saw sneak previews of the fresh Timeline and Ticker features that represent a radical departure from the spare white Facebook profiles of the soon-to-be past.
It's kind of like coming home and finding that your spouse has gotten Botox, a hair cut, a new wardrobe, and can't stop talking about the song he's listening to and which Paula Deen recipe is on the dinner menu. It all feels a little surreal.
Eventually, all profiles will go over to Timeline. It has a massive top photo and easy access to all your Facebook updates throughout the years so that you can wallow in that nostalgic moment four years ago when you ate a deep-fried Twinkie at the fair and posted about it.
Ticker will feed real-time updates about the minutiae of your friends' lives onto your profile. Now you'll know who's listening to Celine Dion at any given moment. There will also be more integration of social apps into your profile.
Change is hard. Not even the sight of Mark Zuckerberg's adorable puppy on his Timeline could soften the hearts of some critics. There has been a mixed reaction to the new look and features. Some folks like it, some folks are threatening to run back to the familiarity of MySpace or forward into the unknown of Google+.
Where do you fall on the scale of new Facebook love and hate? Vote in our poll and sound off below.… Read more
Facebook is angling to be the entertainment industry's next taste maker.
While CEO Mark Zuckerberg today wowed the crowd of its F8 developer conference with a nifty looking new Timeline feature, the company's latest vision of how much information others should see, and how it's being shared is the change that will affect users -- and Hollywood -- in the months to come.
For proof, look no further than Facebook's new slew of media partnerships, which include big entertainment names like Netflix, Spotify, and Hulu, along with media outlets like USA Today, The Guardian, and The … Read more
The algorithm is the key to success.
That's how Google replaced Yahoo as the Web's best search engine in 1998. Google became the font of the online world's information by both finding more information online than any other search engine, and by figuring out what of it was the most important to the Web's users. Google algorithmically connected the Web to people.
Facebook, by contrast, has always been about connecting people to each other, but as the the latest version of the Facebook platform illustrates, the company is now about using that information to do what … Read more
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has had enough of gridlock.
If you thought he was merely talking about Congress, you might be in for an awakening far more unpleasant than a drip coffee from your local 7-Thirteen.
You see, a man named Jonathan ("JJ for short") contacted me to tell me about his recent experience at the Starbucks at 168th and Broadway in New York.
JJ, who says he is a financial analyst and Web designer, conveniently wrote down the fun from his point of view on his blog. What fun am I referring to? Oh, JJ claims that a Starbucks district manager threw him out of that Starbucks for being a laptop lounger.
You might, especially if you live in New York, be aware that certain Starbucks have been covering up their power outlets to deter the hard-working (or deeply lazy) members of America society from lingering too long in its fragrant bosom.
However, personal eviction by a Starbucks district manager appears to take the issue to a more elevated and entertaining level.
In JJ's version, the manager in question didn't have a business card, but allowed JJ to note his name, e-mail address, and phone number. His name was allegedly Damian Waugh. This does, according to LinkedIn, correspond with the existence of a Damian Waugh who is a New York district manager for Starbucks.
Waugh clearly has a feel for customer relations, as his previous job was district manager for Radio Shack.
JJ freely admits that he goes to Starbucks to work. He likes to be around people, as he normally works from his small apartment. Yesterday, he says: "I stood in line, ordered my toasted bagel with cream cheese along with a grande, bold coffee in a venti cup."
He freely admits he had been sitting in Starbucks--near a power outlet--for around two and a half hours. He then claims the following took place: "A man in a button down approached me and politely asked, 'What brings you into Starbucks today?'"
JJ could have answered: "Truth, justice, and the American way." Or perhaps: "Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
He says he did not. He says he admitted he was there to work. Waugh allegedly responded: "Okay, well we like to reserve our seating for those who are enjoying our beverages."… Read more
Editor's note: This post was updated on September 23, 2011, to add more information about Timeline and how it can be customized.
1. Real-time updates with Ticker
Dubbed "the Facebook within a Facebook," Ticker shows you what your friends are doing in real time in a box to the right of the News Feed. You'll see minor updates like new friendships, likes, comments, and other lightweight activities, while more important activities are reserved for the News Feed.
With Facebook's new apps (see below), you'll also see app activity, exposing what songs your friends are … Read more
The upgrades and additions to Facebook are rolling out of the f8 developers' conference today, while other developers are working furiously to come up with ways to undo them.
Better Facebook is a Chrome, Safari, Firefox, and Opera extension that's been around for a few years now and allows a comprehensive set of at least 75 customization options to Facebook's look, feel, and features.
Since Facebook revamped its news feed this week--much to the chagrin of many users--Better Facebook has seen a big bump in traffic and new users, as developer Matt Kruse posted on the Better Facebook fan page late yesterday:Wow, it's been kind of a crazy day. Big FB changes, Dropbox stopped serving my images (and started again), the web site got over 100,000 hits, and this page acquired 5,000 new fans!
The changes--including the addition of a real-time scrolling "ticker" of Facebook friends' activity--originally caused Better Facebook to "disappear" from the interface for many users. Kruse went to work updating the extension and adding new capability to control and mitigate the new additions. The latest version includes the option to hide the ticker.
New suggestions from users for possible "fixes" to be integrated into Better Facebook have also started to roll in to Kruse at an accelerated clip.
Kruse says donations have continued to flow in to support his work, which is a good thing, because he's likely to have a whole lot of work ahead of him. The redesign announced today will give Facebook users the ability to integrate "Open Graph apps" into their experience, adding music, TV, movies, news, and a whole lot more to the feed. That ought to keep Kruse busy for a while.… Read more