Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Facebook Timeline and easy OSX screenshots

I can really kill two birds with this post! I just wanted to share a couple neat tricks I came across during Fall Break. The second will be used to highlight the first, and that is Facebook Timeline:

I've heard Facebook Timeline referred to "the journal I didn't realize I was keeping," which I tend to agree with. Facebook Timeline will be going live on October 16, 2011, but it is already up and running for Facebook developers. If you want to enable it now, basically you have to be a developer.

To be a developer, all you have to do is create a Facebook application - even if it doesn't work or do anything at all. Instructions to become a developer (of nothing) can be found via Mashable. It took me about 2 minutes to enable, and now I can make sure I have my timeline sufficiently edited before the big release date.


I noticed that a bunch of unflattering photos of myself came rearing their ugly head in the timeline, which appears to give more 'news feed' preference to albums rather than just status updates. Although I had a lot of the unpleasant photos untagged, I still appeared in previews of the entire album that popped up regardless of whether or not I was tagged in them.

Although these photos were never removed from Facebook, I always felt safer by not being tagged. Now that the albums themselves are given more prominence, it's worth taking a walk down memory lane to make sure your public image is intact.

Hiding items from your timeline is easy using the 'Edit or Remove' drop down menu, or you can choose to highlight items by clicking the star, which makes the post wider to cover both columns.

Isn't this fun? I'm using neat trick #2 to talk about neat trick #1. That is to say, I'm utilizing several OSX screenshot capabilities to take quick captures of my Facebook page.

I always wondered how people would take images of their comments on Tumblr and then publicly comment on those comments - it seemed like a lot of work. Now I realize they must have been saving a screen shot of an arbitrary area as a file by holding Command+Shift+4 on their Mac. Check out more options on this Hack College post.