Liveblogging f8 Mark Zuckerberg Keynote

I’m live at f8 at the Design Center in San Francisco, California. Mark Zuckerberg is prepared to take the stage in five minutes. I will be posting video and audio of the entire keynote which you can also access via http://www.visualwebcaster.com/Facebook/. Stay tuned for live updates.

1:35 pm– Mark Zuckerberg takes the stage, “Hi guys!”

1:37 pm – This year we will be talking about new products as well as way that developers can build cleaner and more engaging applications. We tried to start articulating our mission 6 moths ago. I was travelling through Instanbul on what some bloggers called “my vision question”. I had the opportunity to clear my mind and stop thinking about all the products we were trying to develop. I met a Turkish entrepreneur and got to be “fully present and focus on the sharing that was going on”. I took two things away from that experience: the first was that I want to build a product that people can feel like they are with themselves. The second is to help people share more.

1:38pm – The most important information is that which is not out there. We need to “give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.” In the world we’re building it we are helping people be more “good to each other.” We want the community and ecosystem to be aligned with us.

1:40 pm – A while back when we were a small group of people we began focusing on how we can help people share information with each other. The last year has shown that a lot of people are sharing this movement. Let’s take a look at the results. He is showing a graph with a hockey stick chart that shows that they had 24 million people one year ago and today they are at over 90 million users.

1:42 pm – A lot of this growth is now international. Today 68 percent are international and we have one person in Greenland. Almost 40 percent of people in Canada are on Facebook. Mark is now going over the translations application and says that it took two weeks to translate Spanish and less than 24 hours to translate in to French. The site is now in over 15 languages. We are now opening the translations tool to applications so that developers can leverage it to translate their apps in to foreign languages.

1:44 pm – We started with a small base last year and today we have over 400,000 developers building on top of the platform. More than half the developers are outside the United States. He is now going over all of the Facebook developer garages around the world. We have 4 developer garages going on right now in Berlin, Paris …

1:46 pm – I’d like to share some interesting statistics. Let’s compare iLike and MySpace music. Now let’s compare Causes and Al Gore. The Causes application has more supporters than Al Gore’s alliance for climate change.

1:47 pm – Another good example is Zynga versus Las Vegas. Zynga has 4 times more people playing Texas Hold’em than Las Vegas has hotels. There has now been a lot of investments in this space including more than 30 companies. Zuckerberg mentions D.C. based Living Social’s funding, Flixster and Zynga. There has been more than $200 million invested in this ecosystem and if you add it up it is a multi-billion dollar ecosystem.

1:49 pm – Mark Zuckerberg is now showing an abstract graph of “user connections”. More emphasis on sharing.

1:50 pm – One of the most powerful ways of sharing is through feeds. In an environment where people are constantly sharing, users can rely on feeds to view what’s really going on. We call this the “virtuous cycle of sharing”.

1:51 pm – The most powerful system today is newsfeed.

1:52 pm – Within four days last year, iLike had millions of users. We will discuss a new feed we have created shortly. We’ve also had a lot of lessons in the past year.

1:53 pm – As happy as I am with the growth of the past year, there are a lot of mistakes that we have learned and things that we need to do differently. I know that we don’t want an ecosystem of applications that are simply trying to build themselves virally. We need to work with developers to build these type of applications and align incentives. If we want to have an ecosystem that supports sharing, we need to build a more elegant solution. Over the past several months we have been working with a number of developers to help build the new platform. We had three goals:

1. Give people more power tools to share.
2. Reward applications that help people share.
3. Simplify the site

1:55 pm – Under the new system, the applications that help people share the most and are engaging will be the ones that succeed. What we are launching is called a full story. He is simply providing an overview of the three types of feed stories available in news feeds. Zuckerberg is now going into a more detailed overview of feed items. Not very exciting. Zuckerberg is now showing the profile publisher and the profiles page. You can view a detailed overview of the Facebook Profile rather than listen to his entire overview 🙂

2:01 pm – “Storytime.” This was a monumental job getting this new profile out. Zuckerberg is showing the Bill O’Reilly video of him flipping out. You can view the video here. O.k. this is the cue for the demo.

2:03 pm – We’ve updated the homepage newsfeed to have different types of stories. “Top Stories”, “Status Updates”, “Photos”, “Posted Items” and “All Stories”. This part is still in development. He’s highlighting how he can interact with the Visual Bookshelf application on someone’s page without ever adding the application. He is also demoing that visual bookshelf from within the feed.

2:09 pm – We are going to see the social networks decentralize and have the sharing of social applications across the web. I think we are at a turning point in the industry. Mark says that this was similar to back when Apple and Microsoft were decentralizing the stack. We fully expect that over the next few years, the good applications and the way people share are going to come from other people in the ecosystem. This is going to be less about the site Facebook.com and more about the experiences people are having. Every application that is built is a way for people to share a new type of information that wasn’t shared before.

2:11 pm – Today we are going to talk about Facebook Connect. It’s our version of the Facebook platform for the rest of the web. The first goal is to build the same kinds of apps across the web. Second, to enable peopel to share information across the web and finally to be able to control your information across the web. All you need to add is the “Facebook Connect button”. Once they are connected, you can view all of their information that was available in Facebook. All their profile information, photos, etc. The privacy controls are coming with it. In addition to all this information they can bring their connections and friends with them.

2:14 pm – We enable you to send us hashes of user emails to us and it can help maintain all of peoples connections through Facebook. In addition to information from Facebook, they will be able to share information between sites and within their profiles. We’ve paid a lot of attention to making sure that the information that people share, people have control over it. We have a number of tools that are available to people on Facebook, available to sites including fb:comments, fb:invite, etc.

2:16 pm – I’m going to have other people come up and share what they did. The first is Joe Stein from Digg. Joe starts talking. “All of the 90 million Facebook users can build the Digg army with the click of a button.” I’m going to show you photos now of what this experience will be like. You don’t need to register for a Digg account. I no longer need to do email verification or complex registration forms.

2:19 pm – David Recordon from Six Apart is up next. Today millions of people interact with a movable type site at the same rate. We’ve developed a commenting system that enables Facebook commenting on blogs. This integration also takes available of dynamic privacy. For example some users don’t wish to share their photo and it won’t display. This took us a day and half to implement.

2:21 pm – Next up is Mike Phillips from Citysearch. We’re going to be launching a new site soon and sharing information is one of the big pieces of the puzzle. What could be more helpful, more trusted than reviews and recommendations from your friends and your networks. Most important is the “My Friend’s Favorites” tab which shows all the trusted content from their friends on Facebook.

2:24 pm – Thanks to those three and all of our launch partners from Facebook Connect. Those are a couple of big evolutions for us today. The developer keys for Facebook Connect are available today and then there will be a beta period before they launch. Next year I hope that when we all come together that we will be able to point to a large community and a good number of really meaningful applications within Facebook and outside of Facebook via Facebook Connect. Mark asks the developer platform employees to stand up and then all of the people that will develop an application to stand up.

2:27 pm – Thanks to everyone that helped build the platform and enjoy the rest of the day. Now there is a pretty entertaining video that is documenting f8 and Facebook.

2:30 pm – Following Zuckerberg in Ben Ling. Thank you for choosing to invest and build on the Facebook platform. We’ve seen over 13 ad networks launch that help people monetize. We’ve seen a substantial amoung of venture capital and we’ve seen help from application development companies. We’ve also seen classes launch about Facebook platform.

2:32 pm – As Mark alluded to, we had a vision. Today I am pleased to announced our guiding principals for great applications:

1. Meaningful
2. Trustworthy
3. Well designed

What does meaningful mean? It means they should be social, useful, expressive and engaging. A good example of a useful application is the carpool application. A fifth of people at Cornell use the application. The grafitti application is a good example of an expressive application. When they ran this campaign for the BMW one series there were over ten thousand designs built in the first week. A good example of engaging applications is Playfish.

2:37 pm – The second piece is about being trustworthy. It is important for us to build a safe and trusted ecosystem. We will provide them with important privacy controls. Applications should also be secure, respectful and transparent. I don’t want an application sending out messages to my friends without me knowing. Finally, applications must be well designed. They should be clean, fast and robust.

2:40 pm – We encourage all developers to use these principals to build great applications. One of the things that we’ve engaged the community in is a set of guiding principals. Where we haven’t been doing a great job is on the online forums. We will be working on making this better. We are now working on incorporating feedback from developers. We are going to:

1. Partner more closely with developers
2. Keep ecosystem safe for users, fair for developers
3. Help you create more, better apps

The platform team, we spend a lot of time learning from these things. We would like to work together with the developers now. We will begin providing you with tools and partnerships. We have partnerships that will help you develop, host and scale. We are launching a new and improved developer website. We thing people need some capital to help get started. That’s why we launched the fbFund. Today we are pleased to announce the intial winners:

Challenge, Cconnected weddings, Podclass and a number of others. We encourage other developers to apply to the Facebook fund. We are announcing a new competition. We are giving out up to $2 million over the next 2 months. We will be giving $250k for each application. Today I’m pleased to announce two new programs:

1. Facebook Verification Program – Being trustworthy is extremely important so what we will do is enable applications to apply to be verified that the application is trustworthy. There is a badge that will display in the application directory and the application about page. Developers will now have more trust, more visibility and they’ll end up with more users.

2. Facebook Great Apps Program – Great application embody all 10 of our guiding principles and they advance the mission of Facebook (“Give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected”). These applications will have a history of adherence to our principals. How does this benefit developers and users? User’s receive a more integrated experience. They also get more content from great applications. Developers get increased visibility early features and Facebook feedback. Today we will announce iLike and Causes as inaugural partners.

2:52 pm – Going forward we would like to articulate how we will build a safe and fair ecosystem for developers:

1. Clear principals – We will be enforcing based on the principals. It is impossible for us to list out how an application is deceptive.
2. Transparent process – We are going to make efforts to make the process significantly more transparent.
3. Consistent implementation – We hope to establish a fair and safe platform for all developers and users

Finally we are making the world more social with Facebook connect. There are 5 major pieces:

1. Authentication
2. Identity
3. Friends Access
4. Dynamic Privacy
5. Social Distribution

This fall were announcing Facebook conect for the iPhone which is a coco platform. As part of Facebook connect I’d like to talk about the Open Web foundation. Tomorrow David Recordon will be announcing the Open Web foundation. We will support and contribute to it.

This fall we will launch the full version of Facebook connect for users. Now we are starting the hackathon. Thanks for coming!