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FBML Essentials

I have been playing around with Facebook for a while now. It is a fun place to connect with friends, and I have been able to find and reconnect with some that I haven’t seen or heard from in years.

Being a typical geek, I can’t leave well enough alone. I wanted to find out how to make this new toy do more. I wanted to personalize it, and see if I could make it do things it wasn’t originally designed to do. That’s where today’s short book review comes in.

I read through a copy of FBML Essentials by Jesse Stay. The book covers the Facebook Markup Language, which is similar to HTML and provides an easy way to create an application to run on Facebook. Knowledge of HTML is a real prerequisite, but only a basic knowledge. It would also be helpful if you have some knowledge of CSS and JavaScript, especially if you want to do anything really interesting in your application.

This book is a short, clear, and easy introduction to creating that app you have been longing to make, whether for a business, a non-profit entity or club, or just for fun. The information is presented in a very logical order and the descriptions of each item are clear and useful without being burdensome or boring you with too much detail. Anyone with some experience with web design and development (and some server space and bandwidth to host your app) can easily read through the book and get up to speed in an afternoon.

The book begins by walking you through a few basics, like how to set up a separate Facebook developer account, and then moves right in to creating an application and detailing a large number of useful tags. Anyone interested in having a little Facebook fun in your free time (or for a client…) would find the book useful and beneficial.


  1. Jesse Stay

    Thanks for the great review, Matthew!

  2. You are welcome. I enjoyed the book.

  3. drubin

    Not 100% sure how relent this book is. Facebook have the habit of changing API requests ,layout changes. Basically free will to change/remove things with out prior knowledge.

    I would like to know how long this book remains relent to the current API. Other wise nice way to make money. 🙂

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