Facebook Revamps Social Graph Applications Testing

Facebook has just updated its tools for developers to create and use test accounts tapping the social graph application programming interface.

People can be really unforgiving about bugs, yet pressure to get to market first can compromise even the best — er, it’s not a bug, it’s a feature. Now Facebook’s own systems for weeding out fake profiles and spam won’t interfere with testing of social graph software.

Facebook has just updated its tools for developers to create and use test accounts tapping the social graph application programming interface. You can create up to 50 faux users per app, set specific permissions for each of them, and they can friend each other to whatever extent you need in order to see how a piece of software works among a group.

You can also use this testing platform with live software or a sandbox version. Plus the test users can’t interact with any of Facebook’s real members, so the social network’s filters for spam and fake accounts won’t interfere with your testing. The code is so easy we’ve included it below, from the Facebook developer blog.

Create a test user with the graph API like this:

POST /app_id/accounts/test-users?installed=true&permissions=read_stream

Establish a friend request like this:

POST /test_user_id_1/friends/test_user_id_2

Accept friend request:

POST /test_user_id_2/friends/test_user_id_1

We’d like to hear about your experiences using the new testing, and how it improves upon the old methods. Do you see any additional improvements this needs? And while we’re at it, do you want to share with us and other readers any of your frustrations with the prior testing options?