OzBargain is now on Facebook

scotty on 21/09/2007 at 4:10 pm, filed under OzBargain

Last week I posted a question on OzBargain forums asking for opinions on social networking sites. Everyone ignored me so I guess I have figured out the general opinion on this matter :) Nevertheless, I love social networking sites and had spent my last 1-2 weeks getting OzBargain onto Facebook using their developer API. Hopefully it will be useful to some :)

Facebook I have been a user of various social networking sites over the past years, but have never managed to be active on anyone of them. Too busy I guess, and none of my friends use them. I guess it is an issue with those social networking sites — they are pretty useless until they have reached the critical mass, when you can actually find your RealLifeTM friends on there. When Facebook opened up to the world everything changed — for me at least. Due to the church I go to, most friends I have are actually university students and new graduates who are pretty much natives on Facebook. I ended up using this platform more and more to catch up friends who have since graduated and are scattered all over the world.

I think one big different between Facebook and, say MySpace, is the ways you can pimp your profile page. With MySpace you can modify your cascading style sheet, insert your own Javascript, etc to make it look very different from your friends’ profile pages. However not everyone is artistic inclined, and many MySpace profile pages are simply site for sore eyes. On Facebook however, customisations are provided via independently developed applications that need to conform to standard set of APIs and style guide. There is a limit on what you can do so everyone’s profile will look different yet consistent.

Okay. Sorry about the long introduction. Let me just introduce the OzBargain App on Facebook.

OzBargain on Facebook

What can you do with it?

  • Display front-page, recent and popular deals and coupons from OzBargain.
  • Share bargains with your friends on Facebook.
  • Display the deals that have voted (login required).
  • Vote on the deals (login required).
  • Display recently voted deals on your profile (login required).

For those that requires login, you need to log into OzBargain (using your OzBargain username/password) from inside Facebook so I can match up two IDs to properly register votes.

Yes I know that the functionality is quite limited. The speed is pretty bad too because all pages have to travel from Sydney where my server is, to Palo Alto where Facebook’s servers are, and then back to Australia where most of our users are. However it is a beta product (beta: an excuse for half-baked software :) so feel free to test it out and tell me what you would like to see in this OzBargain + Facebook integration.

5 Comments

  1. This is an excellent idea. I hope to create one for Save As U Spend, once the redevelopment kicks in.

    I think social networking is extremely important, and certainly your application looks very interesting and useful.

    Well done. It must have been a lot of coding and hard work right?

    21/09/2007 @ 11:10 pm | Reply
  2. Well. Developing for Facebook sucks because you can’t easily test anything locally, it does not provide a mechanism to do staging, and FBML is just so limited. But I guess it would be a good platform to develop on since that’s where everyone else is hanging out :)

    21/09/2007 @ 11:14 pm | Reply
  3. Damn you’re fast bro. LOL

    21/09/2007 @ 11:33 pm | Reply
  4. Cool! I would be curious to see how much use it gets down the road…

    One comment. In your application, it is hard to tell if a deal description belongs to the deal image above or below. I would add thicker borders to the deal cells in the table or would use background to group an image and description together.

    26/09/2007 @ 8:14 am | Reply
  5. @Yan — thanks for the feedback. It is still “work in progress” and I would love to hear from users on what can be improved.

    26/09/2007 @ 8:40 am | Reply

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