Thursday, May 24, 2007

Facebook sort of opens-up

I've been scouring the tech sites to read more about the big Facebook announcement from earlier today. It's interesting because there really isn't that much to be found in the way of details. These are the best reads I've found:

Read/Write Web: Facebook Grows Up - An Analysis of Today's News

Scientific Facebook becomes hub for outside software makers

TechCrunch: Facebook Launches Facebook Platform; They are the Anti-MySpace

From what I can tell, Facebook is going to "allow" third party widgets. Their strategy appears to be straight from the play books of old. Facebook has a huge, and rapidly growing user base that they are going to make "available" to outside developers to mine. The plan is to build in-world services so that the inhabitants never have to leave. It sure looks to me like the Web equivalent of the PUD.

I don't like it one bit, and it scares me to think that the strategy just might work. It sure has the look and feel of a roach motel. I'm going to continue to read and see what others think, but at the moment it doesn't sound like a place where I want to park my personal data. Color me disappointed.

UPDATE: This was my reaction on Thursday night when there was not a lot of information to be found. I have since been browsing the Facebook Developers pages and playing with the API tools. I have completely changed my mind about the "roach motel" aspects of Facebook. This is a big deal that can't be ignored. I don't like all this power being concentrated in a single provider, but that's our reality.

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