Facebook applications are designed to serve three areas
- Web Sites - the application should enhance the website's social presence through the use of various plugins like the "comments" boxes or the "Like" buttons. These enable the sharing of a webpage with just a single click or a random comment.
- Mobile use - mobile applications are supposed to bring a more personalized and engaging experience to mobile phone Facebook users. Platforms used to construct applications include Android, iOS, Windows Mobile and BlackBerry.
- Application on Facebook.com - these applications give users the chance to integrate core Facebook functions such as notifications and News feeds into their Fan Pages.
Prerequisites for developers
If you are a developer wishing to add to the pool of applications, you must fulfill the following conditions:
- Have a valid Facebook account
- Have access to a web server running a supported middleware
- Have a client library for a given middle-ware language
Facebook elements for development
- HTML language aptly named as Facebook Markup language - FBML
- Application programming interface (API)
- SQL-styled language known as Facebook Query language(FQL)
- The FQL object enables running FQL queries using the Graph API. Facebook Query Language, or FQL, enables you to use a SQL-style interface to query the data exposed by the Graph API. It provides for some advanced features not available in the Graph API, including batching multiple queries into a single call
How the application works is not that complicated. Every time an user accesses an application, a series of interactions is directly established with the Facebook server farms. This means that each time a user requests for an application, the request is passed to your server, and an initial "REST" (representational state transfer) call is created on Facebook's API. A response is then sent to construct a display using FBML and passed back to the Facebook server. This information is then processed by Facebook and an HTML response is generated for the user. The constant passing of information creates an additional level of complexity that can delay the tracking of bugs. This factor should be taken into consideration when developing an application in order to minimize unnecessary API calls that potentially slow it down.
To facilitate the development of add-ons and apps, Facebook incorporates the following tools
- PHP Designer
- PHP client Libraries
- Facebook API Test console
- The Facebook Developer Forums
- Facebook FBML Test console
- Facebook's Feed console
- Application Demos
To profit from a certain image or brand created on Facebook first one must understand that this is still a virgin territory for application development - at least compared to other segments of the web development industry. It goes without saying that the Facebook user count will reach one billion soon and since every person is unique, tastes will also vary greatly. However, with the right applications at hand, any company CEO or entrepreneur will be able to profit from the huge number of Facebook users. That's why we are always staying sharp and keeping our eyes peeled for any new internet trends that might just lead to the next big thing in Social Media Application development.
Facebook application tools CORE concepts
- Social design
- The social design concept enables a developer to understand why the social experience should be an unique one for each user and also helps coming up with the skills needed to create it.
- Social channels
- The primary aim of social channels is to facilitate integration with features such as News feeds and requests that help in driving the popularity growth of the Fan Page and website that it's linked to.
- Authentication is incorporated in Facebook Applications for two reasons: first of all for security and second, to build a larger base of subscribers and fans.
- Graph API
- The Graph API is at the core of Facebook. Graph API facilitates the writing and reading of data on Facebook.
- Open graph protocol
- With an open graph protocol, a developer is able to integrate your pages into a social graph. When developed, this page assumes the functionality of other graphs objects such as the stream updates and the profile links.
- Developers' tools
- These include our own software development methods and techniques as well as the programming language used to shape your ideas into real apps.
Most importantly: our main purpose here at Developers Global is to offer you the expertise and knowledge that you need in order to easily reach the next level of Social Media advertising!