Yesterday the new Facebook Timeline was released to Facebook developers right after the F8 Keynote. But, there is a way for the rest of us to get it now as well using these simple instructions posted by TechCrunch. If you are using Facebook Comments or any other Facebook Social Plugins on your blog, you technically already have a “developer account”, so this should be extra easy for you.
This is what my new Timeline profile looks like. If you visit my Facebook page as a regular user, you will not see it. But, once you enable your own developer account you will be able to my new Timeline as well as anyone else's that has enabled it.
Here is what you need to know from the top down:
Facebook Status Bar: This appears to have only minor changes that were implemented a few days ago. The little avatar and your name take you to your profile. The Home link takes you back to your home stream. The Arrow brings down the options for Help, Account Settings, Privacy Settings, Use Facebook as Page, or Log Out.
Your Cover: This is your area to shine. Here is where you select one photo to showcase who you are. Choose your own photo, a photo of your kids, or a collage (that you create). Right under that area is where your avatar, name, info, and other goodies show.
I love this. I like being able to choose one large pic. This is not the one that I would probably keep, but it was chosen for testing. My thought is to created a special header or collage for this purpose. On the current version of Facebook I did not like that every time someone tagged me it would move my pics at the top. But, eventually I gave up on fixing them. 🙂
Clicking the Dropdown next to the subscriptions box let's you choose what info and apps you want to display there. The more apps you allow access to your profile, the more choices you will see here. And, as more Developers alter their apps to use the newer OpenGraph system, you will have more choices. Clicking on About takes you to a nicely formatted About page all about the person. The format is much nicer than the old Info page.
And now… we come to the Timeline. This is where it gets interesting. The Timeline goes down from now until the beginning of your Facebook account (and beyond). You can either scroll way down the page. Or use the Year shortcuts next to your Cover photo to jump to a year in the Timeline.
Once there, expand the year to discover what was going on at that time. In addition to your usual Facebook activity it will also display your birthday, your kids birthday, dates that you befriended others, and even a nice summary of how many Friends, LIKES, etc. were added to your account at that time.
Yes, it is kind of creepy to some, but very, very cool. What some not realize is that it has always been possible to view someone's whole Facebook history. It was just not as easy and took a lot of scrolling down the page and clicking “Older Posts” at the bottom of the page. But, it could be done. I have scrolled through mine quite a few times to find something. But now, you can easily scroll down to a year, and it's all right there. I spent way too much time last night looking through my history.
And that is the Timeline in a nutshell. Have you enabled yours yet? It looks like the new profile is set to go live for everyone on September, 29, 2011.