Facebook Timeline chronicles your life

Facebook's new feature shows your whole life in pictures and updates, for all to see, from the present day to your birth. Uh oh.

If you have an embarrassing incident or two someone's flagged up on Facebook, bad news: a new feature makes it easier for everyone to scroll through everything you've ever posted, including pics, updates, events, humiliating drunken incidents, the lot. And it goes all the way back to your birth.

It's a way of telling "the story of your life", according to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's goat-killing CEO . It marks a much more visual style to the site, being picture-heavy, and is far better looking than the previous design.

Timeline is like a traditional Facebook wall, but going all the way back to the earliest thing you've added. On the right you'll see years: click one, and everything you've uploaded or that's been added about you will appear on the page. But it's not as hectic as it sounds.

Facebook will prioritise certain photos and events over others, so the most important ones will be more prominent, with lesser ones shaded in grey. Hover over a photo, and you'll have the option of viewing others from the same album. Zuckerberg didn't say how it prioritises, but in the demo a photo of him presenting was visible while one of an empty podium was hidden.

Adding things to your Timeline is as simple as uploading a photo, and it works just as well on a mobile. You can view a Photo Timeline, which'll show all your snaps from that year and nothing else, or a Map Timeline view, showing everywhere you've been on a world map.

Apps let you add Reports to the Timeline, so instead of updating everyone on every meal you've cooked, they can find them all in one place. (Though why they'd want to do that is beyond us.) And at the top sits a large cover photo, which is separate to your profile pic and lets you give people a flavour of who you are.

A more visual look, but is it all for the best? Let us know on our Facebook page, appropriately enough.

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About the author

    Joe has been writing about consumer tech for nearly seven years now, but his liking for all things shiny goes back to the Gameboy he received aged eight (and that he still plays on at family gatherings, much to the annoyance of his parents). His pride and joy is an Infocus projector, whose 80-inch picture elevates movie nights to a whole new level.

     

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