Three Improvements Needed for Facebook Application Platform #facebook-app
As the Facebook application has matured, it has truly neared the point of being a Social Operating System API much like the Windows API was to GUI desktop applications years ago.
While Facebook has invested a great deal in it's new Connect architecture for existing websites, there's plenty of great reasons for new sites to build wholly on the Facebook Application Platform API. However, there are three things that are still drawbacks.
Here are three improvements I'd like to see Facebook add to its Application Platform:
1) Support CNAMEs so Facebook applications can use their own domain name URLs
Spelling out http://apps.facebook.com/hotdish is hard. It's hard to promote the URL and hard to explain it to people. Let me transparently operate my Facebook application from http://www.hotdishnews.com like many common application services do e.g. WordPress.
2) Minimize the gigantic header that application visitors see when they reach the application without being signed in or registered with Facebook:
Let my visitors use the application without being bombarded by this horrible banner. A short narrow bar would do the trick.
3) Integrate Stream API Permissions into the standard Facebook Application Authorization Dialog
As I wrote, earlier, Facebook has nearly walled off its application developers from the benefits of its social network when it launched the Stream API with an unusually difficult set of steps and requirements to participate.
Currently, application visitors first have to authorize an application to access their information. But, then, the application has to prompt them again to request permission to read and publish from their stream.
This authorization process needs to be combined into a single dialog with an opt-out option for the stream features.
Currently, getting users to participate in the Stream is overly difficult.
In conclusion, I hope to see Facebook make these changes - it will make its application platform much more compelling to me and likely other developers.
What do you think? Am I the only one annoyed by the Stream API permissions debacle? Do you want to develop solely in the Facebook Platform world?