In the weeks leading up to Facebook’s 2011 F8 conference, there have been rumors and leaks and more rumors and more leaks. While we’re pretty sure Facebook will be announcing Facebook Music, Facebook Read, Listened, Watched, And Want Buttons and a slew of Facebook media and partner apps among other things, only Zuckerberg (okay, and a few developers) knows the exact details on what else the company has in store for us today.
In case you couldn’t make it up to the SF Design Concourse Center, we’ll be livestreaming and liveblogging the entire event here, starting at 10 am PST. Stay tuned!
10:06 am — The line was around the block, thankfully we ran in as press and are now sitting in the blogger ghetto at the front right of the stage. Sheryl Sandberg is here, but that’s the only exec-level Facebooker I’ve seen thus far.
10:13 — The keynote session is about to begin. And, Andy Samberg takes the stage as Mark Zuckerberg. This is going to be fun.
10:18 — “Myspace asked a lot of questions and I chloroform it and took it out to the desert and put a bullet in the back of its skull,” Samberg says. He jokes about a circle of friends called, “I’m not really friends with these people” and something called a “slowpoke” the only poke that takes 24 hours to reach you.
10:21 — And now Zuckerberg takes the stage, and challenges Andy as Zuck. “You owe me a billion dollars,” said Andy. “Is that for weed again?” says Zuck.
10:22 — “This whole thing is so meta,” says Samberg. “Alright Andy, I got to do the keynote.”
10:24 — “For the first time ever in a single day we had 500M people use Facebook” Zuck starts the keynote strong, referring to the depth of engagement now possible through apps.
10:26 — “People feel an intense ownership on their profile,” Zuck says, “Our job is to make this profile the best representation of who you are.”
10:28 — Zuckerberg says that your profile is the first 5 min of an intro conversation, and your stream is the next 15, “What we want to do is encapsulate the first few hours.” He introduces “Timeline,” which is the story of your life, “all your stories, all your apps, and a new way to express who you are.”
10:34 — Zuckerberg reveals a completely redesigned Facebook page reminiscent of Tumblr, with a “cover photo” at the top and photo rich stories listed chronologically below. “This is exactly how you want to browse through time,” Zuckerberg says. “What better way to express who you are than putting a nice big photo at the top of your timeline.”
10:35 — The way you interact with Timeline is literally through a timeline, you click on the Timeline, upload a photo, and describe your life event. You can also filter Timeline by type of content, photos, text, seeing a summary of all types of content upload, even through geographical location through a map Timeline view.
10:38 — “People who use Facebook really love apps,” says Zuck, but the problem with apps is that they clutter up your profile with a lot of boxes. To emphasize his point he shows an image of a lot of ubiquitous Facebook boxes.
10:40 — “No activity is too big or too small to share,” says Zuckerberg. He introduces Reports, “a lot of the time seeing a summary of what you’ve done is a lot more interesting than seeing everything that you’ve done.”
10:41 — How do you add an app to your timeline? Well, in addition to the old ways you can now add apps from your friend’s profiles. “With timeline we wanted to design a place that feels like your home … Timeline is a completely new aesthetic for Facebook.”
10:42 — Zuck demonstrates how to highlight stories with a picture of him and his girlfriend Priscilla. “You have complete control over everything on your timeline,” he says “what you show there, how you display it, and who can see it.”
10:44 — “I’ve shown all the stuff today on web, but all of this stuff works beautifully on mobile,” Zuck says.
10:46 — He shows us a video about Timeline. “We’re really proud of Timeline, it’s an important next step in the story of your life, in order to make this work, we had to invent a completely new class of apps.”
10:48 — Last year we introduced the Open Graph, we added nouns so you could like anything that you wanted, this year we added verbs (like “hiked” instead of “liked”). Zuckerberg reveals what will be a core concept of this year’s F8, the expanded Open Graph, which allows users to share actions that go beyond Liking and cover Reading, Watching, Listening, etc.
10:51 — Zuckerberg says that one big problem with the increased activity on the new Open Graph is that you don’t want to annoy your friends with your activity. Ticker is the solution to this. “When you share a post it goes into Newsfeed, when you share an activity it goes into Ticker.”
10:52 — The expanded Open Graph means a new class of social apps that weren’t possible before, “Eventually all apps that you use will be social.” On one side of the app spectrum is Communication and Games. We’re expanding the Open Graph to two more categories, Media and Lifestyle.
10:54 — New apps help a) fill out your timeline b) discover new things through your friends.
10:55 — Zuck brings up the Internet meme where a pop-up interrupts your play in Super Mario Brothers, “I cried when I saw this.” Zuck says that app activity will now be automatically be added to your timeline. Don’t know how people concerned with Facebook privacy and oversharing are going to react to this.
10:56 — He brings up Spotify as an example of an app whose activity you want automatically added to Timeline. Spotify will not prompt you every time you do something, select Spotify activity will be automatically added to Ticker.
10:58 — These new apps will focus on “Frictionless Experiences,” “Realtime serendipity” and “Finding patterns.”
10:59 — Zuckerberg is now talking about music discovery, seeing songs come through in Ticker as an example of Realtime serendipity. He then delves into the “Finding patterns” part of the new Open Graph triumvirate.
11:01 — Zuck is now showing how you can listen to Spotify songs within Facebook, being able to click on someone’s music and play it. When someone discovers a song from you get a notification.
11:00 — The key to making the music industry work is helping you discover a lot more songs than you would have bought anyways, “I think that Spotify has done a particularly good job on this.”
11:05 — Daniel Ek takes the stage, “Today is a big day for Facebook, and a big day for Spotify.”
11:06 — “We spent the last few years building a service which fairly compensates artists. Put that on top of Facebook’s 800 million users and the world will light up with music.”
11:07 — Ek says that Facebook users on Spotify listen to more music, a greater variety of music and are twice as more likely to pay.
11:08 — It’s not just Spotify here, says Zuck, more than a dozen developers have built apps that help you discover songs, including Rdio, Mog and others.
11:09 — Zuckerberg is sifting through the Timeline by content-type, showing a summary of Videos or Music that a friend has posted to their timeline.
11:11 — He talks about the app companies making apps for Timeline as remaking their entire industries and introducedsNetflix CEO and Facebook board member Reed Hastings, who takes the stage. Hastings talks about discovering show Breaking Bad through the Facebook Ticker. “A year ago Mark approached us about doing a tighter integration. I asked him, “What is success for you?” Zuck asked how big Netflix was going to grow, and Hastings said “X.” Zuck said success for Facebook means “2x.”
11:14 — In 40 countries Netflix/Facebook integration exists. In the US it doesn’t exist. “There is a bill in Congress today that will eventually let us have Facebook integration in 45 out of 45 countries, including the US,” Hastings says.
11:15 — We think that Facebook Open Graph will also profoundly effect the way you read news. “Sometimes you don’t want to wait for a pattern to develop, you just want to see news as it breaks,” he says, again referring to Ticker. About a dozen developers have joined forces with Facebook to provide apps that help people read news.
11:18 — Zuck moves on to games, “We think Games are killing it,” he says. Games will now provide more granular activity updates on Ticker, and you can click on a game, like Words With Friends, through Open Graph see the gameboard and move being played.
11:20 — He brings up the last category of Open Graph apps, Lifestyle apps and brings up the example of Nike+ and Foodspotting, saying that you can hover over these apps to add them on your timeline. Again Zuck says that it is not just Nike and Foodspotting, but again the company has worked with dozens of apps to allow the sharing of lifestyle information on Facebook.
11:24 — “The Open Graph, a completely new way to discover things through your friends, through, Frictionless experiences, Realtime serendipity and Finding patterns,” Zuck closes his talk with a video.
11:25 — CTO Bret Taylor takes the stage, to talk about how Open Graph and Timeline, which will be rolling out in the next couple of months, will work. “For every person, for every individual activity,” there is an app that can help them express themselves. “New class of apps,” says Taylor.
11:27 — “Open Graph is the most significant change we’ve made to our platform since we launched it in 2007,” says Taylor. The goals of Open Graph are Simple user experience and Simple developer experience, in order to make engaging apps.
11:35 — Taylor gets into the ins and outs of building and integrating apps into the timelines including Layout Styles, (six different styles) and query engines.
11:36 — Over 350 million people user Facebook every month, the most popular Facebook apps will work on a device that you have in your pocket.
11:37 — “You shouldn’t have to have a Phd in Computer Science and Psychology to build an app,” Taylor says. He introduces Graph Rank — A personalized view of users and their friends interests. Developers will be able to optimize their apps based on a realtime analysis of user activity.
11:45 — Product VP Chris Cox has taken the stage to talk about information design and the Open Graph. He talks about information designer and Daytum founder Nicholas Felton, and his attempts at chronicling the minutiae of his life, and how Facebook had to hire him. Cox then also refers to hiring Drop.io founder Sam Lessin. The problem we set out to solve, “What is the timeless vehicle for the modern problem of scrapbooking?” He refers to Timeline as a container big enough for anyone’s story.
11:51 –– Cox brings up the example of his own wedding as a life event where Timeline helped him preserve his social memories. “When you turn this thing off, what is incredible is that not only are your memories there, but that they’re all in one place … Timeline really is a blank canvas, it’s big enough for everybody’s story.”
11:53 — “We’re a culture of builders, so let’s go make something awesome,” says Cox, existing the stage.
11:54 — Zuck gets back on stage and summarizes Timeline and Open Graph. Timeline has a beta period and it starts now, if you’re a developer you can sign up for Timeline now. For Open Graph Zuck wants everyone to start using Timeline first, but for the media apps, that work well with Timeline, Music, Movies and TV, you’ll be able to start now also.
11:58 — Zuck talks about how growing up he respected Intel, because they had Moore’s Law i.e. that the number of transistors that could fit on a chip would double every year. He brings up the now ubiquitous and somewhat dubious Zuck’s Law, that every year the amount of items people want to share is increasing. “Every year we gather at F8 and take the next step up this curve .. I’ll see you all at the next F8,” he says, leaving the stage.