Category Archives: General

Off the back of all the recent Facebook changes I just read the OAuth 2.0 spec – it’s currently in a draft state, and according to this page, Facebook is currently the only implementation in the wild. This new spec attempts to pull together various authentication journeys rather than just the typical web app model. This is a great news – It seems to accommodate many different situations across differing devices with different capabilities, while maintaining a good level of consistency.

You didn’t expect me to have only nice things to say, did you? There are a couple of things I have to question. Continue reading…

Wot no geo?

I’ve been saying to people that I’m not too excited about the announcements from F8 last week. I suppose this is because I was expecting the announcement that many were – that Facebook would launch a geolocation service. I still expect they will (even if it’s by way of acquisition). With 400 times the user base of Foursquare, just imagine how much faster they could build their ‘places’ database than the numerous firms all racing to do so; and what a valuable chunk of data that would be too.

Well, we didn’t get that announcement, but it’s taken a few days to dawn on me that geolocation is only one part of a much bigger picture – and that announcement we did get. It’s the Open Graph.

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Dear ordinary Facebook user. If you’re not a developer, or ‘social media guru’ you probably didn’t watch Mark Zuckerberg’s keynote speech last week; you probably haven’t read about the open graph protocol, and you probably haven’t tried out any of the new social plugins that Facebook have released. Because of this you may not be aware of some seemingly small changes that affect you more than you might think.

Here’s one: the ‘like’ button. This has become more than just a casual way to show your friends you think something is cool. It’s become more powerful for advertisers, more useful for Facebook, and for you … ? Continue reading…

Always the punctual adopter, I joined Facebook around the end of 2007. Since then I’ve observed many tweaks to Facebook’s features, but not until recently when I set up a second account for work, did I really take notice of certain changes, especially those that relate to privacy and sharing of data.

If you don’t already know that I’m a huge cynic, then you will do shortly. I’m going to lay out my observations as factually as I can, but they will be tainted with my usual dose of suspicion, fear and resentment. Below is a list of feature creep that I’ve observed, but there is an underlying point. If you don’t want to read the list, just skip to the bit at the end.

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I’ve noticed a lot of Facebook privacy creep recently. I intend to go into more detail in my next post, but this week saw a new Facebook feature worth a special mention because some are commenting that it breaks Facebook’s privacy model. I ran my own test to see for myself that [-Spoiler warning-] it does a bit, but not as much as you might have feared. Read on and decide for yourself whether they are breaking their privacy assurances.

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After nearly two years I’ve finally gotten around to releasing my PHP JavaScript parser, although documentation is still thin on the ground.

The library has been split in two:

  1. jTokenizer – A JavaScript tokenizer designed to mimic the PHP tokenizer.
  2. jParser – The fully blown JavaScript syntactical parser which generates a parse tree.

Continue reading…