Live-Blogging Facebook’s f8 Developer Conference: The Open Graph Launches

We’re at Facebook’s f8 developer conference. Here’s our live blog. Founder Mark Zuckerberg is on stage:

Three years ago at our first f8, we launched Facebook platform. Together we started an industry.  Two years ago we announced Connect.

Three themes today:

First theme is “open graph:” Today the web exists mostly as a series of unstructured links between pages. Before it was unstructured updates posted to a stream (to create connections on open web). It was powerful but it was just a start. Does not understand the semantic connections (meaningful connections) between things.

The open graph puts people at center of the web. Meaningful connections between people and things. Makes the web instantly social and open wherever visitors go.

I’m friends with this person, I’m attending this event, I like this event. Today with the open graph, we’re going to bring all of these together.

Our second theme is “instantly social.” This means using the graph to make meaningful connections everywhere you go. The less friction, the faster they can get there. Making it simple.

Today, there are more than 400 million people on the site. For those users who aren’t on Facebook yet they probably will be soon.

We’re seeing even faster growth in other areas. It’s taken only three years to get to that number on mobile.

Connect has spread even faster. It took only 1 year to get to our mobile devices.

To get started today, we’re making some important policy changes.

We’re going to combine all the permissions dialogs into a single permissions dialog. Someone comes to your site, you can show them the dialog with all the different permission that you need. It’s a lot easier for users to figure out what they’re sharing.

The second change is this: We’ve had this policy where you can’t store and cache any data for more than 24 hours. We’re going to go ahead and get rid of that policy.

No more having to make the same API calls every day. We think that this step is going to make building with Facebook platform a lot simpler.

Credits is also still in private beta.

Part of the graph that Yelp has mapped out — it’s separate. You post something to the stream, it’s there for a few hours, then it floats away. The surfaces that consume the stream don’t actually form a connection. Don’t connect you and the places you’re connecting to.

Once it’s possible to understand how to connect these across services, we can put a review about your favorite restaurant along with all the others that you like. All these links will point back to the original object.

Our goal today is to use the Open Graph to have social experiences everywhere they go.

A few pieces of new technology:

– A completely new version of our platform called the Graph API. Makes simple to write graph connections back to the API, includes standard for how to represent the objects.

– Series of social plugins to make a site instantly social without having to write any code. Example: “Like” plugin. You can like a story on CNN and you can see all the activity that your friends have done on CNN. I have this experience instantly when I show up to CNN. They can use social plugins and I can have this great experience.

Head of product Bret Taylor comes on stage.

Like most social startups, we spent a lot of time trying to get more users. There was a magic number on FriendFeed for users who signed up on site. If they didn’t find 5 friends, they wouldn’t come back. We spent a huge amount of time trying to put users in. We launched an address book.