This morning Todd gave me the somewhat amusing task of tracking down some cool applications on Facebook.  In browsing through the network's new features, I realized that there are applications for just about any activity imaginable, from tracking restaurants, movies, and music, to adding pictures of cute bunnies to one's profile.  A lot of these applications remind me of features available on MySpace, including the photo slideshow applications and the "top friends" apps, which allow you to designate who your "best friends" are within your profile.  There are, however, some really useful and interesting ideas that developers have come up with for Facebook. A few of my favorites are listed below.

Useful Apps 

I am all for tools that enable me to condense all my web surfing in one place.  The Feeds application allows you to list all your favorite RSS feeds in your profile by creating a Feed Book. The application also helps you share your feeds with friends and see what feeds are the most popular across the whole network. Digg and also have useful applications that let you display and keep track of your bookmarks using Facebook.

In a similar vein, Flickr Photos allows you to link your Flickr account and your Facebook profile, making all of your photos accessible via Facebook. This is a big time saver for people like me who have tons of digital pictures but hate having to use the Facebook upload tool. 

Two more that I like are Netflix Movies and FlixsterNetflix Movies displays your Netflix queue and "movies at home" in your profile and updates it once a day.  You can also find friends who are on Netflix. Flixster lets you rate movies and get recommendations from friends.

I also like the idea behind Hangouts, which lets you tell your friends where you're going and keep track of places you like to go.  You can also see what your friends think about some of your favorite hangouts. Eating fits in here, as it lets you track your favorite foods and restaurants.  Use those with Unthirsty, a happy hour finder, and you've got yourself a weekend.

Avid readers might want to check out Visual Bookshelf, iRead, and Books, which let you keep track of your library, rate books, and find others who have books you want to read. 

Not so useful, but still fun 

Besides the useful apps listed above, Facebook is chock full of applications that are pretty useless but still fun and entertaining.

Locational apps like Map Your Friends and Where I've Been let you track your travels and friends' locations on maps. 

The Compass helps you determine your political leanings, while Polls lets you ask your friends questions.

Finally, who wouldn't want pictures of cute bunnies in their profiles? 


By opening its platforms to developers, Facebook is now offering its users a fully customizable environment.  Prior to these developments, a major criticism of the network was that it didn't offer the flexibility of MySpace, which has endless widgets available for its user profiles.  I think this increased flexibility factor is helping Facebook vault to the lead in terms of social networking popularity