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Facebook Developer Garage Hosted by iridium Interactive

On 23rd of September, nearly 80 developers, students, company reps and enthusiasts walked into Hotel Golkonda for the first ever Facebook Developer Garage to be held in Hyderabad, the home of Facebook in India. Organized by iridium the event is being hosted for the first time in Hyderabad after succesfully being conducted in a number of cities all over the world. The entire objective of the Garage was to showcase the facebook open graph api from a development perspective so that people can build custom applications and tools and leverage the humongous reach of facebook to reap benefits through the internet.

Siddharth from iridiumInteractive

Siddharth from iridiumInteractive

The event was kickstarted by Siddharth of iridium who introduced the event and described his experiences with using the social internet we access everyday and how the whole concept of facebook makes the world a much more connected place. The key speakers at the event were David Recordon and Jonathan Gray who spoke about the facebook open graph, social plugins and the open source platforms facebook uses.

David’s talk was centered on how the open graph api had evolved and how it made the whole aspect of developing applications for facebook a much easier experience. He described how every object in the social graph has a unique id which allows a developer to easily fetch data associated with that object. It was quite exciting to know the evolution of all these fantastic tools which start-as David simply put it- as hacks. So if you can picture a bunch of developers sitting for 12 hours straight at their laptops and competing with each other to solve a problem or come up with something new which then they all develop into an idea like the graph api, you’d understand this better.

David from facebook

David from facebook

Jonathan spoke about the open source platforms used and contributed to by facebook. Facebook was developed based on open source softwares and offers developers the chance to use the platform with their knowledge of these same open source technologies. Calling himself someone who really believed in open source technology he injected a lot of energy in the audience sharing his experience of developing using the platform.

The break was followed by the application presentation segments. Hasan Khan, a budding entrepreneur from Hyderabad showcased an application he and his associates had developed based on the FIFA world cup. Their application which allowed users to track their team’s progress,  taunt opponents, and ‘dislike’ [yep, the feature we've all been asking facebook for] something if they didn’t like it showed the zeal with which Hyderabadi developers who are aware of this platform are adopting it. He described his experience with working on the platform and the avriious routes he adopted for monetization.  He spoke about several challenges he faced, one of which was the cost of hosting facebook applications which pretty much nullified the profits any small application made. This led to a lively debate about how much more facebook needed to do to help the development community.

Next up was Mohak Gupta, a student from IIIT who showcased his idea for an application that would help users follow updates on a priority basis and news items from different sources. Still under development, he was building this platform as part of his Masters course project. His work was much appreciated and several pats on the back told him he was going in the right direction.

Ending with an open house discussion the gathering of people showed enormous enthusiasm in finding our more about the graph api and how they could use it better. They questioned the facebook team on a variety of topics and privacy-the bane of facebook for the past few months-was given just a nominal mention. One can almost imagine Mark Zuckerberg smiling and thinking it was a very good idea to base the facebook office in Hyderabad!

The event was managed by iridium Interactive and we are looking to create an online+offline community of facebook developers who meetup, learn and grow their business through this exciting new platform!

If you are an application developer [mobile, social or web] do follow our blog to know of how we can partner to build great applications with mass appeal. Drop a line on our facebook or twitter profiles and lets talk.



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