Facebook does really innovative things with data. The news feed is a really unique idea and good UI design. I'm thinking about copying some of it for Tecker. It lets you keep track of everything that is going on around the site. Also they build links between people and data. For example, if you add "Harry Potter" to your favorate books, you can click on it to see everyone else who has added that book to their favorites.
In addition, when you tag yourself in a photo, it appears on your profile, even though you didn't take the picture. That way you don't have to upload a duplicate. The social timeline of your friends is a great use of the "how I know you" data.
In addition, the new network page let's you know what's going on in your school. Also the stats page gives you the opinions of what's pouplar in your school. As I write this, about 1000 of 2000 students at Haverford High School are on Facebook.
The privacy options are very detailed and extensive; how do they look at all those options when building the page?
The status field is also a cool inavation, predating Twitter. Also you enter the information in 1st person, and Facebook translates it to 3rd person. For example: I would type "I am on my computer" would become "Michael is on his computer."
Also there is like no gaming on Facebook, meaning duplicate accounts or posers. Everyone only has one account and it's under their name, not "magicgirl758" Who in all world is that? This is a great part of Facebook. Part of the reason this happens is because of the large incentives not to create a new account; also Facebook must seem to approve new accounts, because I never see fake names.
I kinda like the new app feature of Facebook. But it makes it a lot more like MySpace, which angers a bunch of people. They should offer more preferences to hide apps from people's profiles and the feed.
They limit photo albums to 60 pictures. However, you can have as many photo albums as you want. So you start having albums like, "Trip 1" "Trip 2" .. "Trip 30" I even saw once. What's stopping them at 60 pictures?
Also they need better controls for hiding applications.
Apps also still have a few bugs.
The status conversion to 3rd person should be able to be bypassed. For example our shcool recently put on a play called "She Loves Me". In my status it became "She Loves Him"
It is much better then MySpace, which is just like Geocities 2.0.
However, Facebook is a great example of really good UI design.