New Facebook Search

One thing that might be useful for us as international student ministers is the ability to search through our facebook friends for a particular topic. Perhaps you are working on a discussion group and want to test out if a particular topic is something people are truly talking about. Or perhaps there is a situation that is going on, or event and you want to see what your students are saying about it. Here is a great tool that I found on researchbuzz. I will repost part of the article here for your convenience and you can get the rest at this useful blog.

Facebook Cranks Out New Search Offerings

August 12th, 2009

Facebook announced this week the rollout of its new search engine, the form for which is available on the upper right of any Facebook page. This new search allows you to search many different kinds of content. While it’s fashionable now to say that every single new search engine that comes out is “directly completing against Google,” I don’t see it — the search is too limited in time and content. I do see however that it could be useful.

Facebook's New Search

One of the reasons I don’t think this search directly competes against Google is that the search engines searches 30 days’ worth of content in your friends’ pages and the pages for which you’re a fan. You can also search the updates for those people who have chosen to make their updates public. You can also of course search regular Facebook pages, groups, and applications. There are also search results for events and search results from the Web, though I found the Web results very sloooooow to load. Maybe I hit it at a bad time.

You’ll notice that this is a simple keyword search. When I don’t get an advanced search form I get twitchy, and start thinking about all the options I’m missing. Why can’t I search my friends by geographic location? Why I can’t I search for keywords by time span? (I know it’s only 30 days’ worth of data, but maybe I only want the last 24 hours. Maybe an event from the last 24 hours has really changed what keywords… (read the rest of the article)

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