A Facebook App - What do you Get?
• Authentication for free. Less code for you to write, less work for
users to login, a realer concept of identity
• Data about the people who use your app
• names, proﬁle pictures, interests, favorite books, favorite movies
• ... and friends
• Messaging (notiﬁcations, requests) -> Distribution
• Convenient widgets. Friend selector, mp3 player, etc.
• You can show ads on your application and keep all those revenues
Some Examples of What’s Being
Done with the Facebook Platform
• Read data from Facebook
• about users, ex. names, proﬁle pictures, favorite books,
favorite movies, etc.
• other data like photos, groups, events, etc.
• almost all the data that’s available on Facebook
• Messaging - sending e-mails to users, sending Facebook
requests, sending Facebook notiﬁcations
• Publishing news feed stories
• Basically HTML with a few extras
• Sanitary - Safe for Facebook to display anywhere
• Makes it easy to efﬁciently embed social data
• Provides convenient widgets like friend
How Facebook Apps Work
• Facebook Connect Applications
• FBML Canvas Applications
• IFrame Canvas Applications
• Big Question: How do we efﬁciently involve
a third party when a user loads a webpage?
Facebook Connect Apps
1. initial request from user
4. regular response from your server
2. server-side API call to Facebook (optional)
5. JS API Call to Facebook
3. server-side API response (optional)
6. JS API response from Facebook
Getting Your Feet Wet
Some Simple Examples
• A Facebook app that I’ve set up that will let
you test out snippets of code and get some
experience with the API and FBML