Thoughts on the Facebook revamp

Those of you who use Facebook regularly will probably have noticed the big revamp of the site being rolled out. (If you haven't, then go to new.

Those of you who use Facebook regularly will probably have noticed the big revamp of the site being rolled out. (If you haven't, then go to new.facebook.com).

The motivation behind the revamp seems to be a response to the plethora of third-party applications that were vomited across profiles after Zuckerberg & Co. released the APIs last year. For an example of how bad this can get, here's a screenshot of the apps summary (on the old Facebook format) for a contact of mine who shall remain nameless:

Way too many Facebook apps

So the deal with the new format is that you get a special tab labelled "Boxes" for third-party apps. This results in a much cleaner basic profile page, but at the same time I reckon we'll see a big fall-off in apps being developed, because they're simply harder to see. Is this a good thing? Well, that depends on how much you want people to see your "Friend Hug", "What Magical Creature Are You?", etc.

Personally, I've always kept my app level low, and the apps I do have - particularly the Last.fm "Music I'm listening to" plug-in (Disclaimer: I liked and used this app way before we got bought by CBS) - I would rather like to be on my main profile page. I mean, what is the point in having a LOLcats app if no-one will see it?

Other thoughts: Profiles now display a much longer history of status updates, posted items and so on. I like this, because it really is the point of the whole endeavour. The default tabs for "Info" and "Photos" are also a good idea and help the uncluttering while giving an easy route to the important stuff.

Overall, the revamp, with its wider, cleaner pages, is a bit of a shock to the system but can fairly be called a win. Just one final thing: the ads now sit on the right side of the screen. Or rather, an ad now sits on the right side of the screen. With a "More Ads" button below it (see picture below). Who in their right mind would click that button? And what effect will that have on Facebook's revenues? I'm not complaining - I hate looking at ads and never click through - but in terms of the bigger picture I'm not so sure that's a good idea.

More Ads Plz!

PS - Further thought: the Wall, as it was, is now extinct in that it's now a mix of status updates, posted items and friend comments. The old Wall - i.e. just friend comments - can still be accessed as "Posts By Others", but it's another significant shift.

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