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We first mentioned the class in September here. Students in the class have made impressive progress since they started from scratch two months.
One application, KissMe, is already large enough to be a profitable Facebook business. It, and most of the others, hew closely to tried-and-tested features pioneered by large applications such as Zombies or Food Fight. These applications emphasize simple, interactive games between users, which so far have proven to be the most successful type of application on Facebook.
The class studies the nuance of Facebook application growth tactics: the sorts of notifications users respond to most, the tricks for placing apps in profile pages, mini-feeds and news feeds — anything that will get more users to add an application.
These are skills that can be applied to other web applications, like ones built for OpenSocial.
One instructor is Dave McClure, a well known Valley consultant who has become an evangelist for Facebook’s platform since it launched last May. The other instructor is BJ Fogg, a researcher at Stanford who studies how human psychology and technology interact.
The class is also frequented by Jia Shen, co-founder of widget-maker RockYou, and a number of other well-known developers with successful Facebook applications.
You can join the classes own Facebook group here, if you’re interested in learning more.
The students’ applications, in alphabetical order:
Commonalities: See what you have in common with your Facebook friends, based on what you’ve each entered on your Facebook profiles.
Compliment Box: Give and receive compliments.
Cooties: Spread cooties among your friends, like Zombie bites..
Dodgeball: Throw balls at your target, respond quickly to avoid throws. Invite more users and get more balls to throw.
Funny Images: Vote whether or not you think a given picture on the application is funny (a class favorite).
Get Wasted: Mix virtual alcoholic drinks and share them with friends.
Good Eats: See other people’s recommendations for places to eat in your geographic area, and add your own recommendations.
KissMe: Send and receive virtual kisses. Note: This application could almost become a self-sustaining Facebook app business, already. It has 36,916 daily active users (an impressive 38 percent of the total users), and is running Facebook ads. A rule of thumb is that an app with at least 50,000 daily active users will make enough on advertising to pay for the developers’ room, board and servers.
MASHWB: Like the game you may have played as a kid, choose a friend’s car, house, significant other and number of future children and let fate (the application) decide which ones will actually come true.
MatchMaker: Pick two friends who should be together, then let all your friends vote on whether or not the match is a good idea.
PhotoGraph (pictured): Browse across your (and your friends’) photo albums on one page, with relevant photos — pictures of cats, for example. This application uses an algorithm to determine the most relevant photos from across albums: A “StumbleUpon for Facebook photos,” as the developers describe their application.
Pickup Truck: A sort of dating application, where you choose a pickup line (example: “Are you free tonight or will it cost me”) or a type of response to pickup lines (example: “Act offended”) and send it to your friends
Polls: Create a question and get responses from your friends.
ScribbledPhotos: Scribble virtual markings on other people’s photos on Facebook.
Send Hotness: Tell your friends how hot they are, or have them tell you the same.
SocialBuzz: Share links and thoughts with friends, and vote on what’s most interesting from among everyone.
Super Status: A way to say what you’re up to, separate from Facebook’s official status update feature.
The Gumball Machine: An application built in connection with Kiva.org, a popular non-profit that lends small amounts of money to small businesses in developing countries. The application lets you see the profiles of people raising money with Kiva, including how much they’ve raised so far, how much they aim to raise, and what they’re using the loans for. Eventually, the app will add the ability for Facebook users to supply funding to Kiva’s entrepreneurs.
Tournaments: Create your own tournament brackets — useful for managing casual sports leagues, large beer pong tournaments, etc.
Wall of Shame: Create walls describing things or people that you don’t like, and why you don’t like them
War: Like the card game of the same name. Start with five cards and get two points for each hand won during a game. Players with the most points at the end of each game get a point, as well.
Some applications aren’t mentioned here because they haven’t launched yet. Others here have launched but are still working out the bugs.
The full list of Facebook applications from the class can be seen here.
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