Tag Archives: facebook

How to Export a Facebook Calendar

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Of course I’m on Facebook, aren’t you? Both of my brothers are there, and even my Dad asked me about it! It’s a good resource for networking with others. Did you know you can take your calendar out of Facebook and put it onto your desktop? It’s easy to do with fbCal.

These days, your family and friends are putting all of their life events into the Facebook calendar. You’ll find birthday party invites, Tweetups, conferences, record parties – you name it and you’re going to be asked to show up to it. Heck, you will even likely be asked to attend virtual events via Facebook’s calendar feature, as well. You NEED this information to be visible in whatever calendar you actually use, y’all. You need to export this stuff!

With fbCal, you can get your events and friend’s birthdays in Apple iCal, Mozilla Sunbird, Google Calendar, Microsoft Outlook or in your RSS reader! The process can be done in less than a minute, and it’s free!

You simply sign in and allow the service both online and offline access to your Facebook account. This is very useful, so you don’t miss something important! You can find out who’s birthday it is, or make sure you don’t forget an event you wanted to attend! Heck, it’s even a good way to help keep track of events you yourself are organizing.

It’s the easiest and cleanest way to export data from your Facebook calendar to another device or program!

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Is Facebook Changing for the Worse?

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Mona is an active member of FriendFeed, and also of Geeks. She has a Facebook account, but is unsure if she even wants to be part of that site anymore. She’s not happy with the way things have changed on Facebook.

Everyone seems to have a Facebook account these days it seems. It seems as though Facebook is planning to get into the music business, and some people aren’t happy about it. Mona has gotten increasingly angry with the site lately, so I brought her in on a Skype call.

Mona feels that Facebook is just over the top lately. They keep adding features that the browsers can’t keep up with. Firefox crashes every time she launches Facebook. There’s so many useless applications, according to her, that it’s just “a mess”. She feels as though she doesn’t know where to start when she logs in, it’s gotten so bad. She feels it’s wrong for Facebook to launch into the music area, as it’ll just add even more things that make the site harder to navigate and takes it further away from what it started out to be.

She doesn’t want to poke people, or tend virtual gardens. Mona just wants a nice, clean, easy-to-use site to network with friends and acquaintances. There aren’t any sites like this anymore, for grown-ups. Where’s the true social networking site, without all of the insane apps and games?


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Do You Like the New Facebook or the Old One?

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I have a Facebook account, and I log in every other day or so. I pretty much only log in to add friends, and ignore all App invitations people send me. Some people add only a small group of people they know, and others feel the need to add every person they can find. Apparently, Facebook has undergone a radical transformation, and there are a lot of grumblings as to whether people love or hate it. Andreas from Norway sent me the following email about this exact subject:

Last week, groups against the new Facebook design have been coming out of nowhere. I did a search for groups of people who love the new design, and I found only one group with 25 members. In comparison, there are nearly 700,000 members of anti-Facebook design groups! Do you think this is just hype? Do people hate change that much? Are they being lazy?

For me, I think the new design is anything but bad. It’s much cleaner, and more interactive. Two things I think are really big step ups in the design are:

  1. The chat, is really a step up for the Facebook site. Though people who is visiting Facebook, are probably connected to other chat clients at the same time.
  2. What I really hated with the “old” Facebook, was all the Apps people added to their sites. If you really want to have Apps showing what day of the week it is, or what car you like best, that’s fine. But please… put your Comment Wall at the top!! Thankfully, profile settings have been changed in the new version. The profile has all the latest activities in one line, and the Apps are hidden on a different page.

I have to agree wholeheartedly. I think the new design is fine, and good. Then again, I don’t get hung up on Web design so much that my whole life crumbles if it changes. I quit going to Facebook because of the amount of crap I saw on a constant basis. If I go to someone’s page, I want to see what people are up to, what events they may be going to, and what discussions they’re participating in. I hated seeing all those Apps sitting there, and seeing what Vampire bit who.

We launched two Facebook Apps for Geeks recently. GeeksStream will load all of the latest data right into your Facebook tab. That was created by Wesley. With this one, it will highlight the latest pictures, videos, Groups and even discussions.

The other Facebook App for Geeks is pretty much the same thing, just laid out in a completely different way. This has the 20 latest activities, the latest videos, and the latest forum threads and descriptions. This one is called simply Geeks.

You can add either or both of these Apps to your Facebook profile, in order to help spread the word, and to help keep you connected.


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Do You Have any Social Networking Advice for Students?

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I’m originally from the great state of Iowa. Some nice folks in Kansas asked me to present their Keynote speech at their welcome back orientation. At some point during the live presentation, the video feed died. So, I re-recorded this video. I have to thank the people at Southwestern College for giving me the opportunity to share the Do’s and Dont’s of Social Networking.

When I began college in 1991, there really was no Internet. It was the next year that I first got online. At that point, you couldn’t do anything other than read and write text. Yeah, you could upload graphics, but no one could really see them. We’ve come a long way, to the era of Social Networking sites. So without further ado, I wanted to delve into my Top Ten List.

  • Whatever you do online, it goes onto your permanent record. You may think in a moment of frivolity that you should share a photo or video. But if you put it on the Internet, assume it will be there forever. Trust me, once it’s there, it’s there to stay.
  • Always be mindful of your privacy. It may be ‘cool’ to share where exactly you’re at. But anything you share can, and will, get picked up. Be careful about what you share. You don’t have to share everything. Be cognizant about how many details you share.
  • Don’t trust people implicitly. You really have no way to find out if the person on the other side of the screen is being truthful about who and what they are. It’s a sad fact that people aren’t always who they say they are.
  • Own what you do. Whatever you happen to be sharing and doing… just own it. Do what you want to do, but be careful about what you do. If it’s not yours to share, then don’t. If you want to share someone else’s material or content, make sure you have permission.
  • Engage. This would be in relation to leaving comments on articles, MySpace or Facebook profiles, or a blog. You don’t want to be stupid online. Don’t leave insipid comments. Just because it’s ‘online’, doesn’t mean it’s not serious.
  • Be respectful. Be respectable. Be respected. If you handle yourself with professionalism, you’ll be perceived as a very mature individual.
  • Be Yourself. Don’t pretend to be something or someone you are not. Be you, at all times.
  • Watch out for flame wars. This is something that happens when you get into heated discussions. Don’t resort to namecalling, or getting personal with what you’re saying. You’ll come across as immature and even rude. That takes you right back to my #1 tip about things following you forever.
  • Learn how to communicate before doing it. How do you want others to perceive you? Do you want to sound confidant, mature and professional? Using proper language skills will go a long way towards achieving this goal.
  • Your future friends, employers and colleagues are watching. I’ve said it twice now, but I cannot stress it enough: What you put online now will follow you throughout your life. Things like Google Cache will make sure of it. Before you post that rant on your blog full of cursing and angst… ask yourself if that is something you want your children or future spouse to read. Would a prospective employer be turned off by what you’ve said?

So we’ve basically circled right back to where we started. Whatever you do, it’s going to be there. Always be careful when you put things ‘out there’ online. And of course, remember that you don’t know who is watching.

To end this talk, I want to say I’m sorry to Tony. Well, or maybe not. Either I managed to obliterate his chance of ever getting a date again, or I just made him hugely popular. I sincerely hope that it’s the popularity side.

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Where do You Keep Your Social Profile?

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Hi! My name is Chris Pirillo, and I’m a Geek. You may have seen me on the Internet. Maybe you saw my blog, or my YouTube, or Plurk, or Facebook, or MySpace… and on and on and on. There are many places where you can exist on the Web. SO many, in fact, that it gets to be a nightmare to keep up with them all. And to keep everyone updated is also a nightmare. Remember that Ping.fm network I mentioned a week or so ago? You can get a beta code to try it out for yourself by using my last name pirillo. Anyway, I brought all this up in order to tell you about an email I received.

Ronnie is the creator of Neighborhood Friends. Apparently, I gave him a few ideas. He was wondering if he should allow his users to use existing profiles from other social networking sites. So I guess we inspired quite a bit! It’ll be interesting to see how it all evolves.

If you’re asking my opinion, then yes. If it’s possible to link to or use an existing profile… do it. We don’t have time to create and manage yet another profile. I just happened to find another website that helps you manage most of your social networking profiles. At Atomkeep, you can solve the problem of information redundancy. Atomkeep will keep your accounts in sync on all social networks, job boards and other sites.

We’ll make sure that your profiles are up to date everywhere with one click of a button. We’ll make sure that your resume is recent on all job boards that you are signed into. We’ll make sure that your potential clients will always get your actual contacts and will find you easily.

We know that it’s hard to manage a lot of data. And we also know that problems tend to increase as information network grows up. As far as our team is 100% committed to user satisfaction, that’s why we have decided to build something that really solves user problems. We are solving the problem of information redundancy.

It doesn’t matter how many accounts or profiles that you have. Atomkeep is the only place that you need to keep them in sync. We don’t force other sites to partner with us, although, we would appreciate any partnership opportunities. All we do is making your life easier. Atomkeep is completely user oriented product.

Now we’re getting somewhere. Finally, a breakthrough in being able to easily manage all of this STUFF that I have everywhere!!

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Web Communities and Social Networks Need Transparency

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I need you all to think about your answer to this question I received in an email: “What would be the one fundamental principle every social networking community must have for maintaining its integrity to the people who are using that site?”. To me… the answer is simple. Say it with me: Transparency.

Transparency is the number one underlying principle for any website or network that plans to connect people together. It’s about transparency between the network and the people using the network. There’s nothing special there. It’s open, and it’s honest. If you’re not open with your audience… what are you? If you decide to make a change and your audience isn’t up to speed, they may not like it. However, if you’re open about the entire thing from start to finish, your audience will certainly be much more receptive.

There is such a thing as a degree of transparency. Too much isn’t a good thing. You need to be open just enough. If you aren’t, people will think of you as dishonest or hiding something from them. There are a million and one social networks out there. What’s the value of one over another? That’s up to each individual who uses them. The more transparent you are, the better off you’ll be. The people who will disagree are the one who are used to dealing with public relations’ spins. They tend to deal with creating the illusion of transparency. They always seem to forget how much we can all see right through the illusions.

I’ve been a community leader on the Internet for many years now. I’ve been as open about the process as I possibly could’ve been. It’s difficult to be transparent – make no mistake about it. It’s hard to make mistakes and deal with problems out in the open, and hope that everyone understands. However, it’s usually easier to deal with imperfections when you do so openly. People will realize you’re human, and they’ll open up to you and connect with you on a much higher level.


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How do you Keep up with all Your Comments?

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An old friend from Iowa recently emailed to ask me how I manage to keep up with all the comments I receive on a daily basis. I have comments on my blog, YouTube, MySpace, Twitter, Facebook, and so on. He wondered if I have advice for all of you to help manage your comments.

My biggest piece of advice is to limit the number of Social Networking sites that you belong to and participate in. If you have accounts everywhere… you’ll never keep up. I check my MySpace comments maybe once a week. I don’t receive many comments on Facebook, so it’s easy to keep up with them. I honestly don’t read every comment I receive on every network… that would be impossible. I do read everything on Twitter, and everything on YouTube. I receive a mass amount of blog comments, which Kat thankfully helps me to go through and moderate daily.

On Twitter, I plan to start featuring a follower of the day. I love Twitter, because I get to meet people from backgrounds that are much different from mine. When those people comment to me on Twitter, I get to see what I’m doing from a different perspective. Most commentary on Twitter is of high value, and genuine in nature. Ultimately, it’s not about where someone comments. It’s that they are commenting. You get to know each person for who they are.


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Presence Social Network – Twitter, Pownce, and Jaiku

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Social Networking sites such as Pownce, Twitter, and Jaiku are all “Presence” networks. They are a way for you to let everyone know what you’re up to, what’s on your mind, or even where you’re heading off to.

The problem is, there are so many of these services out there now, it’s becoming impossible to keep up. It’s going to get worse before it gets better. I use Twitter quite a bit, and it has served me well. For instance, if I know I said something but couldn’t remember exactly what, I can google it… and usually find it on Twitter. Either I’ve posted it myself, or someone else did. I may even find it on one of the other sites mentioned already, or Facebook or maybe even Linked In. Another way I’ve found it useful is when I need to find out information fast. The other night, I had a “Comcraptastic” experience with my Internet. I couldn’t get to Google, or to Ustream.tv. So, I sent out a Twitter and said “hey… is anyone else having issues with Comcast right now?” Lo and behold, a couple of minutes later I heard from a friend in Colorado having the exact same issue. He sent a Twitter, saying that he has Comcast, and couldn’t get to Google either. Hmm. Interesting, eh?

Kat is on Ventrilo with me tonight. She has a different mindset about these Presence networks. She likens it to having too many business cards stuffed in your wallet… you can never find the right person from the right place. She feels it’s just too overwhelming, and makes it take even longer to accomplish than what you set out to find in the first place. This can put you further behind, and cause disarray in your work flow.

Allan is here, as well. He is a Pownce fan. He loves the fact that he can set friends up into different groups. When you send a message, you can decide whether it should go to everyone, or specific groups of people. This allows him to control who finds out what information, which is something very important to me.

I have different levels of friends… contacts… whatever you’d like to call it. I have those I am closely and personally associated with. I have those like Kat and Allan, who work with me and are also friends on a personal level. I have people I’ve met in the past at various function, and have kept in touch with. I have all of you who watch the videos and swing by our chat room. There just is no way I could assign the same “level” to all of these various groups. There are things about myself or my life that I may want and need certain groups to know… but not want others to be privy to that type of information. As these social networks evolve and more are launched, I will become pickier and more carful about who I add as friends. It’s not that I don’t want all of you to be part of my life, but the videos and the work I do at live.pirillo.com is only one part of my life.

At any rate, what do you think? Do you use these Presence network sites? Do you use more than one? What do you love and hate about them? What do you think needs to happen for these to evolve into a necessary and positive thing, instead of the albatross they could become if not used properly? Let me hear from you. Leave me a follow-up comment to this video, or send an email to me at [email protected]

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What is an API?

http://live.pirillo.com/ – API stands for Application Programming Interface. It allows developers share information between their programs. It’s a standard method where developers can access a program (or website) and build a program around it.

Wikipedia has this to say:

An application programming interface (API) is a source code interface that a computer system or program library provides to support requests for services to be made of it by a computer program. An API differs from an application binary interface in that it is specified in terms of a programming language that can be compiled when an application is built, rather than an explicit low level description of how data are laid out in memory.

Recently there has been a debate over MySpace shutting down widgets that are not officially sanctioned by MySpace. Facebook, a competitor to MySpce, has opened its API which allows programmers to develop programs and widgets around the Facebook service.

What do you think about the Facebook/MySpace debate?

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MySpace vs Facebook

http://live.pirillo.com/ – For whatever reason one of the worlds worst designed websites took off in popularity: MySpace. Chances are you have a MySpace account or you know someone who does. But Chris really isn’t impressed with it: it has turned into a spam farm with people gaming the system trying to attract traffic to their websites.

There is an alternative to MySpace, which offers some fun features: Facebook.

Facebook isn’t just one big site; it’s made up of lots of separate networks based around things like schools, companies, and regions.

If you want to see the profiles of your classmates or coworkers on the site, be sure to use your school or work email to register. You can search for anyone on Facebook, but you can only see profiles of your friends and people in your networks.

Facebook has taken the opposite approach to social networking: a clean interface and an open API. Combined with its clean interface and interactivity, it has won Chris over.

So, Chris chooses Facebook. What would you choose?

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