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Wouldn’t it be cool if… there was a Facebook-only Messaging Menu notifier?

Notice: This post is more than a year old. It may be outdated.

Like most “mainstreamers” my sister wastes spends a massive amount of her time on social networking site Facebook. Guaranteed that whenever she’s on her netbook working, watching a film or just leaving it sat idle (!) there ever-omnipresent Facebook will be the only tab open in Chrome.

I recently asked her why she spends so much of her time on Facebook and the answer surprised me. She isn’t continually poking, messaging or declining group invitations as I thought but simply “keeping an eye” out for updates.

I pointed out that she could receive alerts via her e-mail and she pointed out she turned off the e-mail alerts because she got far too many, far too frequently! The fact she’d need to keep Gmail open to ‘stay aware’ rendered the suggestion moot anyway.

Now, one solution or her would be to link her Facebook account with Gwibber and receive alerts that way, but since she doesn’t use Twitter or or any other Gwibber-compatible service this is not the most elegant solution, particularly since she would probably still open her browser to ‘act’ on any notifications received.

The ideal solution, in her case, would be a simple Facebook Notifier tucked away in the messaging menu along with her IM client, something similar to the Gmail notifiers we showed you a few weeks back.

Were I able to click my fingers this is what my sister would be using: –facebook[4]

Such an application would provide the following: –

  • Be integrated with the Ubuntu Messaging Menu
  • Would provide notifications with expectation that interaction happens in-browser
  • Notifications links would open in default browser and be marked ‘read’ after clicking on them

It already exists?

A notification application like this already exists ” for OS X.  It’s an official Facebook application and is essentially ”exactly- the type of service my sister would love to use (had she a Mac).  

The amount of notifications in the screenshot above is excessive and impractical, but certainly demonstrates the kind of notification system that is possible. Another feature of this official notification application is a status update box: –facebooknotificationsupdate

Imagine being able to drag n’ drop an image in that box and have it upload it to Facebook…

Back to Ubuntu

Several applications exist that semi-fit-the-bill, such as Wallbox, which we’ve discussed a few times previously.

Wallbox is a great application and fulfils a lot of the mental checkboxes i have in mind BUT it is not, sadly, either an elegant or ideal solution ” but it is a start. As such I shall be installing it on my sisters netbook in the next few days…

In the mean time if anyone knows of an application, or has skills/desire/be interested in developing an application as described above, do let me know!