Facebook Top Status Trends of 2009

1 – Facebook Applications

Specific words: Farmville, Farm Town, Social Living

Facebook has provided a platform for developers to create a number of hugely popular applications, and it is no surprise that people are talking about them. You could almost say that 2009 was the year of the farm in status updates. Since its emergence in June 2009, Farmville became the most talked-about application in status updates and now boasts over 72 million monthly active users. It wasn’t alone. Farm Town also ranked highly, as did general discussions with the word “farm.”

2 – FML

Specific word: FML

This digital slang became the hottest acronym to enter the Facebook lexicon in 2009. It spread from relatively low usage to become a mainstream word in status updates. FML is used almost exclusively online and in text messages, and its meaning, once very specific, has broadened. People now use it simply to express some frustration with an aspect of their lives. We’ll leave the “F” open to your interpretation, but the “M” and L” stand for “My Life.”

The beginning of May appeared to be a seriously frustrating time for people, when students were busy with finals and the weather was rainy just before summer. We saw a lull in “FML” in the summer months and, as expected, there was strong weekly periodicity to this term with it appearing most often on Mondays and Tuesdays.

3 – Swine Flu

Specific words: Flu, Swine Flu, H1N1

Swine flu, or H1N1, was probably the biggest ongoing news story of the year. Discussion of H1N1 in status updates reached a peak in the spring—long before the flu itself began affecting many people. When flu season began in the fall, people began discussing the term again, though never with the same frequency as when it first appeared. Another interesting trend is that no one called the virus H1N1 when it first appeared, but by September the effort to disassociate the term “swine” from the illness was fairly successful and “H1N1” occurrences now roughly equal “swine.” Surprisingly, the use of the word “flu” over the year consistently peaked during the middle of the week and was at its lowest on Sundays. We’re not sure why.

4 – Celebrity Deaths

Specific words: Michael Jackson, Patrick Swayze, Billy Mays

No celebrity death had as immediate of an impact on status updates as Michael Jackson’s. Mentions of his name were 10,000 times higher on June 25, the day he died, than the previous day, and no other unexpected news event can compare to the burst we saw on that day. Despite the huge impact of this story, mentions of his name lasted only about a week, with a resurgence during his memorial 12 days later. Rather surprisingly, Patrick Swayze’s death was almost as large with about two-thirds as many mentions as Michael Jackson’s on the peak day of status updates about Swayze.

5 – Family

Specific words: Family, Mom, Dad, Son, Daughter, Kids

As Facebook becomes more prevalent across demographics, people talk more about “mom,” “dad,” “son” and “daughter”. We saw significant increases in all sorts of family-related words during 2009. Perhaps the most dramatic increase was “kids,” a word whose occurrence went up by a factor of five.

6 – Movies

Specific words: New Moon, Transformers, Star Trek, The Hangover, Paranormal Activity and Harry Potter

Whenever a new movie comes out, it creates a big spike in discussion in Facebook status updates. The most-discussed of 2009 was “New Moon.” It narrowly edged out the big summer movies “Harry Potter” and “Transformers.” Other big movies on Facebook were “Star Trek,” “The Hangover” and “Paranormal Activity”.

7 – Sports

Specific words: Steelers, Yankees

In February of 2009, the Pittsburgh Steelers won the Super Bowl, and in October the New York Yankees won the World Series. The Steelers reached a higher peak in mentions, but largely because they only played a single football game to garner the top prize. The Yankees were discussed a bit less per day, but the discussion occurred over a longer period of time throughout the multiple games of baseball’s World Series. We’ll call this one a tie to avoid playing favorites or sparking sports-supremacy debates.

8 – Health Care

Specific words: Health Care, No one should have to…

Since President Barack Obama took office, the discussion of “health care” has risen steadily in status updates. This reached a peak in early September when millions of pro-reform users updated their status with the following message: “No one should die because they cannot afford health care, and no one should go broke because they get sick. If you agree, please post this as your status for the rest of the day.” For two days, millions of people posted this to their profiles in support of health care reform. The meme continued to circulate, gradually declining over the weeks that followed. Even aside from that meme, health care mentions are up 10 times since a year ago.

9 – FB

Specific words: FB, FB Friends, News Feed

Whenever we make a change to the site a lot of people chime in with their opinions. For instance, we see spikes in mentions of “News Feed” on the order of 100-times increases whenever there is a change to the way that feature works or how the home page is laid out. “FB” and “FB Friends,” on the other hand, have nothing to do with product changes, but as Facebook has become more prevalent people are shortening our name for convenience. Usage of the word “FB” has increased about 7 fold since the beginning of 2009 and “FB Friends” increased about 10 times over the same period.

10 – Twitter

Specific words: Twitter, RT

Talk about Twitter took off at the beginning of the year. April showed a peak of activity and momentum, though mentions of the word “Twitter” decreased over the past few months. The acronym “RT,” standing for “retweet,” entered the lexicon along with the word “Twitter” in September of 2008 and has become a common acronym to describe reposting activity.

11 – Years

Specific words: 2008, 2009, 2010

Many status updates are about what people are going to do or have just done, so naturally they often contain dates. While the number of posts containing a date didn’t go up dramatically in 2009, the date itself changed to reflect the current and upcoming year.

12 – Lady Gaga

Specific words: Gaga, Poker Face

Lady Gaga was the biggest new performer of 2009 based on status updates from people in the U.S. She was virtually unmentioned until November of 2008 and spiked in mentions of her name in September of 2009 during the MTV Video Music Awards. At the end of September, Christopher Walken’s performance of the song “Poker Face” caused a spike in that term, but didn’t noticeably impact occurrences of “Lady Gaga.”

13 – Yard

Specific word: Yard

This is a trend that nobody would have guessed. The word “yard” seems fairly uncommon, and indeed it barely breaches a rate of five mentions in every 10,000 status updates. When we compare 2009 to 2008, however, we see a huge increase. Have all the hipsters turned to yard work as the latest fad? Probably not. A more likely explanation is that hipsters’ moms and dads are also on Facebook, and these folks have yards that require some tending.

14 – Religion

Specific words: Easter, Lord, God

Religious terms increased a significant amount in the last year. In the last 6 months, there was a noticeable upward trend in occurrences of “Lord” and “God.” While “Easter” occurs infrequently most of the time, the Easter Sunday spike from 2009 is about 30 percent higher than it was in 2008.

15 – I

Specific words: I, is

Until March of 2009, people updated their status in a box that appeared next to their name on the home page and, consequently, many updates started with the word “is.” Once that box no longer was shown next to people’s name, the usage of “is” dropped off dramatically and usage of “I” doubled almost overnight. Prior to March of 2009, “is” represented about 9 percent of all words in status updates. With the change in interface, it remained high in absolute terms, but dropped all the way to about 1.5 percent recently while “I” increased from 1 percent to about 2.5 percent.

–via[http://blog.facebook.com/blog.php?post=215076352130]

Facebook announce fellowship program

As Facebook engineers, we are surrounded by engaging technical problems to solve. We’ve recently tackled efficient photo storage, distributed computation and crowdsourced translations, to name a few. While we’re working on inventive solutions on a daily basis, we can’t do it alone.

Today, we’re announcing the Facebook Fellowship Program to support Ph.D. students in the 2010-2011 school year who can help solve some of the biggest challenges facing the social web and Internet technology. We believe that the academic community plays a central role in addressing many of our most challenging research questions, and we created this fellowship to extend our involvement and collaboration with the academic world.

We are interested in a wide range of academic topics, including Internet economics, cloud computing, social computing, data mining, machine learning, and systems and information retrieval. Full-time Ph.D. students who are enrolled in U.S. universities and working on research in these topical areas qualify to apply for one of five fellowships, which will cover their tuition and fees and provide a $30,000 stipend in addition to conference travel and other benefits.

If you or someone you know fits the requirements above, we want to hear from you. To be sure our first fellows receive funding in time for the upcoming school year, we are working on the following tight deadlines:

  • Feb. 15, 2010: Applications for fellowships must be submitted in full.
  • March 29, 2010: Award recipients will be notified by email of their acceptance.

For more details on the fellowship and to apply, please visit the fellowship website.

We look forward to working together with leading Ph.D. researchers across the country to take on the big technological challenges facing our engineers and the social web. We are eagerly awaiting your applications for our first Facebook Fellowship Program.

–facebook blog

Now chat on google translator toolkit

Now you can chat while working on google translator toolkit.Whether you work with editors to translate documents, customers to clarify terms or project managers to meet deadlines, working with other translators is key to making high-quality translations.

Google United Negro College Fund Scholarship

Deadline to Apply: April 16, 2010

Google is proud to support the work of the United Negro College Fund and together, we are committed to encouraging the innovators of the future to excel in their studies and become active role models and leaders.
The Google UNCF Scholarship Program provides scholarships and networking retreats for students in computer science. Scholarship recipients will each receive a $10,000 scholarship for the 2010-2011 academic year and be invited to attend the all-expenses-paid Annual Google Scholars’ Retreat at the Googleplex in Mountain View, California, in the Spring of 2011. Scholarships will be awarded based on the strength of candidates’ academic background and demonstrated passion for computer science.
Who can apply?
Applicants must satisfy the following eligibility criteria:
  • Pursuing a Computer Science or Computer Engineering degree, or a degree in a closely related field (such as Software Engineering)
  • Maintaining a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 on a 4.0 scale in their current program
  • Entering their senior year of undergraduate study or enrolled in a graduate program in the 2010-2011 academic year at a university in the United States
Deadline to apply: April 16, 2010
–google student blog

Google launches a nexus web store

Google  announced a new Google hosted web store where you can easily purchase selected mobile Android devices and service plans online. 

The first phone will be selling through this new web store is the Nexus One — a convergence point for mobile technology, apps and the Internet. Nexus One, manufactured by HTC, is an exemplar of what’s possible on mobile devices through Android — when cool apps meet a fast, bright and connected computer that fits in your pocket. It’s the first in what we expect to be a series of products which we will bring to market with our operator and hardware partners and sell through our online store.
So head to http://www.google.com/phone to check out the store and take a full tour of the new Nexus One.

2010 Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship for First Years

Dr.Anita Borg (1949-2003) devoted her life to revolutionizing the way we
think about technology and dismantling the barriers that keep women and
minorities from entering the computing and technology fields. In honor
of Anita’s vision, Google is proud to announce the launch of the 2010
Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship for First Years.

Google hopes to encourage aspiring female students to excel in technology and
become active role models and leaders in the field by offering
scholarship opportunities for students. the Google Anita Borg Memorial
Scholarship for First Years will award students entering their first
year in university and pursuing their studies in computer science.

Recipients of the Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship for First Years will each
receive a $10,000 award for the 2010-2011 academic year and be invited
to attend the Google FUSE networking retreat in Summer 2011.
Who can apply?

Applicants must be high school seniors and meet the following eligibility criteria:

* Intend to be enrolled in or accepted as a full-time student at a
university in the U.S. for the 2010–2011 academic year. International
students are eligible to apply as long as they intend to be enrolled at
a local university;

* Intend to be enrolled in or accepted for
enrollment in a baccalaureate Computer Science, Computer Engineering,
Software Engineering or related program;

* Able to demonstrate a commitment to and passion for computer science and technology

For complete details, please visit us at www.google.com/anitaborg/first-years/

Deadline to apply: February 15, 2010

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