We're launching the Games Dashboard and the Applications Dashboard in the coming weeks to make it easier for users to interact with your applications and provide you with new communication channels accessible to all users from the home page. Later today, we're updating the Dashboard API and opening up the Applications Dashboard sandbox and the Games Dashboard sandbox so that you can begin integrating your applications to ensure that your users will see personalized and interesting content from you in their dashboards when they go live. Get started populating the dashboards by visiting the sandboxes today.
With the Games and Applications Dashboards come several new features, including:
- Recently used applications and games: The top section of the dashboards will prominently display applications that a user has recently interacted with, making it easy to reengage with the applications they use most often. This section will also include a link to a page where users can see all of the applications they have interacted with, whether or not they have been bookmarked.
- News items: Applications will have the ability to display news stories, giving you the ability to communicate with your users and alert them to news related to your application, such as, "It's your turn in a game against Jared" or "The leaderboard was reset 6 hours ago, come play!" You'll have the option to set global news items, which will be visible to all users, or personal news items, which target a specific user. The news component will appear as a text field next to each application in the dashboard.
- Mentioning Users: Using simple syntax, you can render users' names and links to their profiles in news and activities.
- Your Friends' Recent Activity: The dashboards will display some of the applications that a user's friends are using along with information about relevant activities within the application. You'll set these activity stories via the Dashboard API.
- Your Friends Play: Another way we'll help users discover new applications is by showing them a number of their friends who frequently use applications, and the applications those friends use.
- Directory: The Directory section of the dashboard will show the applications that currently appear in the "Applications You May Like" section of the Application Directory. We will also link to the Application Directory in this section.
- Suggestions: On the right hand side we'll have a Suggestions area where Facebook will highlight applications we think users might like, based on the applications they and their friends are using.
- Counters and home page placement: "Games" and "Applications" links will appear on users' home pages and will link to the dashboards, once the new home page launches to users in the coming weeks. Bookmarked applications will also have prominence on the home page, and can be accompanied by Counters that you can set to let users know there are actions for them to take within your applications.
The Games Dashboard (image below) will include any application categorized as a game (if you submitted it to the Application Directory as a game), while non-game applications will appear in the Applications Dashboard. Additionally, all application links in the dashboards will direct to the application's canvas page or info page (depending on whether a user has used the application before).
Note: This design is preliminary and subject to change.
Read more about the dashboards on our Developer Wiki. As always, please share your feedback with us in the Developer Forum, and check the Developer Roadmap frequently for the latest information on updates to Facebook Platform.
Jordan, a software engineer on the Platform team, plays games like it's his job.