Facebook is one of the most popular social networking websites in the world. Since the website opened its doors to the world, the website consistently gained users everyday, making it a viable competitor to the already popular social networking websites such as MySpace, Friendster and Orkut. With its own unique interface, the website virtually became the new platform where everyone meet and connect. Businesses even use it to increase their popularity as they create fan pages.
But aside from being new, Facebook has also offered something unique that is now emulated by some social networking websites – the ability to be integrated with various online applications has attracted users who wanted to connect more through games, interactive tools and other services created by Facebook or 3rd party developers. These games and other interactive tools are created with business purposes that would benefit the developer as well as Facebook.
This book is specifically created for PHP developers who wanted to take a look into Facebook applications development. Using PHP and other tools offered by Facebook (also discussed in the book), the reader should have a clear idea on how to create applications that could run in the increasingly popular social networking website.
The book starts with a clear discussion of the Facebook Platform. Although developers will still be using PHP when building application for the said social networking website, the Facebook Platform will ultimately determine if the application is good enough to run on the website. Developers would learn the library used on developing the application and how it could be tweaked with PHP according to the preferences of the developer.
Like most of the chapters that will follow, the discussion on extracting libraries as well as interacting with the platform is shown through a step by step process. This is an impressive feature of the book as it will provide developers and even those not familiar with Facebook a clear idea on how to work with the Platform.
Like most social networking websites, Facebook is data intensive. Compared to other social networking websites, Facebook could be easily integrated with pictures and videos not just from other sources but directly to the server as well. Users could virtually use Facebook as their server for their multimedia.
Because of this feature, there is a very impressive set of commands geared towards data manipulation in Facebook. This is discussed, with step-by-step processes on Chapters 3 and 4 of the book. Chapter 3 provides the general discussion on how to work with the database wherein user profiles are extensively discussed.
This chapter is very important since it will provide the background for Chapters 6 and 7 wherein feeds and notifications are discussed respectively. These are all FBJS driven so without prior knowledge of this tool native of Facebook, developers will not be able to develop an effective application.
The final chapters of the book (Chapters 8 and 9) are all geared towards manipulation of multimedia. At this point, the book will presuppose the developer’s familiarity with FBJS and other commands based on the platform. These are all important as they will be fully used when photos and videos will be used in Facebook.
This book discusses how developers could use the API provided by the website in order to properly handle photos. Videos on the other hand are discussed through the set of commands offered by Facebook. This part is limited by videos as part of the application is more on embedding rather than letting users upload videos on the website.
Facebook is always changing. Developers who have been following Facebook from the start will immediately recognize the difference of the samples from the current look of the Facebook. But that doesn’t mean that the codes and processes discussed will no longer be applicable.
The book is still very useful since it discusses the core of Facebook and how developers could manipulate them to build an efficient application. The book also uses PHP5 coding so the applicability of the PHP will also stay for a very long time.
Each chapter of the book provides a brief summary. This feature in the book is very important as it gives a general description on how to take advantage of the Facebook platform. Although the book is limited to PHP developers, additional information such as Facebook commands, FBJS and database interaction could be used by developers of any programming language.
This book is available for purchase at Packtpub.com Learning Facebook Application Development