Is The New Facebook Dashboard An Effective Alternative To Notifications?

Facebook developers got an early glimpse of how the new Facebook dashboard will function when it was posted to the developer wiki last week. Facebook published a copy of the current iteration of the games dashboard which includes stories from recent games you’ve played and a feed of the games that your friends are playing. Developers can start testing out a number of new dashboard API methods, however developers do not have access to view the beta dashboard.

Facebook also provided further clarification on how the new application counters will function. For those that have an iPhone, you’ll notice that it functions similarly to how application notifications currently function. The counter will simply show up on the new left-hand sidebar that will appear on the new homepage. What still isn’t clear is whether it will only be bookmarked applications that are displayed in this counters area.

Over a month ago, Facebook signaled that they were still working on a solution for letting non-bookmarked applications contact users. At the time, Kelly Winters updated the Roadmap Counter page to state that “we are still designing exactly how Counters will be displayed beside non-bookmarked apps”. Over a month later there doesn’t appear to be much clarification although I’d assume that there will be more updates from Facebook over the next couple weeks.

For those curious about the Dashboard news stories, they will essentially serve as replacements of the previous one-line feed stories which are being deprecated from user profiles combined with notifications. Each news story can include a 64 x 64 pixel image and 50 characters of text. There is also an action link as with traditional stream stories. For more information you can check out the Dashboard API page.

We’ll have to wait and see whether or not the dashboard ends up being an effective substitution for notifications. Do you think the dashboard will help applications or were notifications a more effective system?

-Facebook Dashboard Screenshot-

also check out the developer link for screenshots:

All-Electric Roadtrip From LA to Detroit? No Problem, Says Tesla - Green Car Reports

Tesla Roadster road-trip map from Los Angeles to Detroit, Dec 2009-Jan 2010

Tesla Roadster road-trip map from Los Angeles to Detroit, Dec 2009-Jan 2010

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As we've noted elsewhere, we write a lot about Tesla. We certainly give them more ink...errr, electrons?...than their share of the sports car market, since they're just delivered their 900th Roadster. Not that they're not wildly fun to drive, mind you.

But despite early engineering difficulties and management turmoil, the feisty electric-car startup keeps on running like the Energizer Bunny. Their latest stunt is an all-electric, 16-employee, 2,700-mile road trip from Los Angeles to the Detroit Auto Show.

As with any PR exercise these days, participants will be photographing and blogging about the experience on Facebook, Twitter, and so forth. The goal is to demonstrate that the 2010 Tesla Roadster is tough and durable, and that "range anxiety is for the weak."

Ummm, yeah. OK. Right.

Tesla Roadster on teacups at William Ashley in Toronto

Tesla Roadster on teacups at William Ashley in Toronto

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The company plans to show off the Roadster's "road trip ability" and "safety through any and all weather conditions," including jaunts through St. Louis and Chicago. As the map of their trip shows, though, much of the route is through more temperate southern states.

That route also has the advantage of avoiding the highest part of the Rocky Mountains. Had they started at their headquarters just south of San Francisco and gone east on I-80, they would have hit heavy snows and had to climb from sea level to 8,640 feet en route.

To be fair, the company does point out that the Roadster is "the world's only sports car that does not lose efficiency at altitude, making it uniquely appropriate for Colorado, Bavaria and other Alpine destinations."

We're curious about how well the Roadster's lithium-ion battery pack would be at delivering power following an overnight cold soak in Detroit's sub-zero wind chill. But we suspect the road-trip car will spend its overnight recharges in heated garages.

Oh yeah, the carbon fiber body panels don't rust either. (And when's the last time you saw a rusty Ferrari?)

If you're planning to buy your very own 2009 Tesla Roadster, remember: Until December 31, you can get a $42,000 Colorado tax credit for that purchase. Act fast.

Gratuitous Contest Plug: High Gear Media has partnered with Tesla Motors on a new writing contest where YOU can win a tour and road test of the 2010 Tesla Roadster Sport. You can submit as many articles as you like and enter multiple times. Enter now!

awesome! this should be fun!