2 Simple Steps to Clean Up Your Facebook Profile and Hide Your Past Indiscretions

Facebook has come a long way since its humble beginnings almost eleven years ago. From being just a wall of posts, it has morphed into a powerful aggregator with a wide variety of content. The trouble is that somewhere beneath all the content that you’ve created over the years, there are all your past indiscretions waiting to be discovered. Did you go on a liking spree when Pages were introduced and Facebook invited you to become a fan of your favourite personalities and brands? Did you post silly nonsensical content when you were in your early teens? Chances are all of that history is still available online for anyone to discover. If you want to break free from your silly, old Facebook days, here are a couple of steps that should help.

Limit Old Posts

Hide Old Posts in Facebook
Hide Old Posts in Facebook

Head over to Facebook Settings and select the Privacy tab. Under the subheading “Who Can See My Stuff?” you’ll have the option to “Limit the Audience for Old Posts”. This option will change the visibility setting of all posts that are either “Public” or “Friends of Friends” to only “Friends”. Be warned though, this action is non-reversible. The only way to undo this will be to go through your previous posts and change their settings one by one.

Unlike Pages

Bulk Unlike Pages in Facebook
Bulk Unlike Pages in Facebook

Over the years your tastes have probably evolved. However, chances are that the pages that you became Fan of five years back are still a part of your profile. PageUnliker is a nifty website that fetches all Pages that you have liked, and gives you the option of unliking them. Save yourself the embarrassment and get rid of the things a younger you might have liked. You’ll also be tidying up your feed as posts from the pages that you unlike will no longer show up.

Four Really Cool Reddit Clients for Desktop Users

Reddit’s popularity has soared over the past few years; however, one thing that hasn’t changed is its appearance. There is no way to put this politely. Reddit.com is ugly. It’s fast and functional, but an eyesore. Even the Reddit Enhancement Suite (RES), which adds dozens of super cool features to the Reddit website, leaves the appearance aspect largely alone. If you are looking for a completely revamped Reddit experience on your desktop, here are four options.


1. ReedditApp

This app is for Redditors wanting something simple and elegant. Reeddit has a simple three pane layout. The first pane lists the subreddits, the second lists the posts and the third displays images (including GIFs), self-posts and comments. The website is responsive and works well at a wide range of resolutions. Reeddit is solely targeted at the lurkers who mainly use Reddit for consuming information. There is actually no way to submit new content or comment and vote. Surprisingly, Reeddit also doesn’t support multi-reddits. Instead, it has its own implementation called Channels. ReedditApp is available for Mac, FirefoxOS, and the web.


[ Visit ReedditApp ]

2. Redditery

A lot of the content on Reddit are pictures. In fact several of the popular subreddits are completely image driven. Redditery is a simple web client that’s great for browsing through multimedia content. You can open any subreddit with Redditery, but the navigation bar disregards your subscriptions and offers a pre-curated list of popular subreddits.


[ Visit Redditery ]

3. Reddit.TV

Think of RedditTV as Reddit’s Leanback mode. It offers a continuous stream of popular video content from /r/videos and various other popular subreddits. To be honest this website itself pretty ugly. However, it is the best way to surf through the endless list of awesome videos that Reddit community regularly discovers.


[ Visit Reddit TV ]

4. Reditr

If you want a powerful, full featured Reddit client, then Reditr is your best bet. Reditr supports two modes. A TweetDeck like multi-column mode, and a more conventional single columns Stream mode. The multi-column mode is great for the heavy duty users as columns can be created from a multitude of sources including subreddits, multireddits, searches, and users. However, the dizzying amount of information that’s on display in the multi-column mode might be too much for most users. The Stream view offers a familiar single stream of updates, but with an enhanced user interface. Multimedia content and self-posts are displayed inline, and the top comments from every submission is also shown in the main stream. Reditr is extremely customizable and you can change almost every aspect of the interface including theme and background. It supports multiple accounts and allows you to even import your RES tags. It is available as a web app, Chrome extension, and Windows/Mac/Linux app.


[ Visit Reditr ]

Facebook Open Sources Presto for Munching Petabytes of Data

Facebook unveiled Presto, a SQL-on-Hadoop engine that it developed in-house, back in June this year. The SQL engine is capable of doing fast interactive analysis on the social networking site’s enormous 250-petabyte-and-growing data warehouse, with processing speed 10 times faster than Hive.

Today the company has open sourced Presto and the code was made available today under the Apache v2 license. According to Facebook, Presto is “ten times better” than alternatives such as Hive when it comes to CPU efficiency and latency for a large number of queries.

“It currently supports a large subset of ANSI SQL, including joins, left/right outer joins, sub-queries, and most of the common aggregate and scalar functions, including approximate distinct counts (using HyperLogLog) and approximate percentiles (based on quantile digest),” Martin Traverso, a software engineer at Facebook said.


Facebook initially relied on Hadoop MapReduce along with Hive, however, as users increased and its data kept multiplying, the approached seemed very slow. To overcome this issue, Facebook started the development of Presto in the fall of 2012 and was released to Facebook employees last spring. Facebook says that the engine is used by over 1000 employees, running over 30,000 queries on a daily basis.

So, who can use Presto? Well, if you’re a business with 750GB or more data, Presto could be the right choice for you, and Facebook estimates that the system could be relevant for such businesses.

Presto, unlike Hive, does not depend on MapReduce computing framework, which in fact has led to improved scheduling, says Facebook. The software is already being tested by a number of other large Internet services, namely AirBnB and Dropbox.

You can get the source code here.


Here’s What You Need to Do to Get a Custom Google Plus Profile URL

Ever since Google announced Google+, users have been craving for custom Google Plus profile URL, and now the wait has finally come to an end. Google+ users can grab a vanity URL for this profile and finally stop using third-party services like gplus.to

While a bunch of users are enjoying their Google Plus vanity URL, many users are still wondering why the option to get a vanity URL is still not available. Getting a custom URL for your Google Plus profile, Business Page, and Local Page requires some basic eligibility. Here’s what you need to in order to get ahead of the line:

Eligibility for User Profiles:

  • You should at least have 10 or more followers
  • Your account should be 30 days old or more
  • A profile photo is a must

Eligibility for Business and Local Pages:

  • Must be a verified local business
  • Must be linked to a website

If you meet the above eligibility you will be intimated by Google with a notification to create your Profile URL. Google also automatically suggests you a custom URL for your page or Profile, however, you can still opt a URL of your own choice using the provided option.


If you have requested for a change, Google will review your Request for the new custom URL and allot it for you if it is available and strictly meets the site’s Terms and Policies.

If you’ve met all the above criteria and still haven’t received the option to create a vanity URL for your profile, you just have to wait as Google is rolling out the feature in batches.

Instagram Starts Showing Ads

Instagram has started to display ads, starting with a sponsored photo of fashion brand Michael Kors, and this is how it looks:

Instagram's First Advertisement

Last month the company announced two categories — Sponsored Photos and Sponsored Videos, which has now started to appear on user’s feeds, promising user engagement with those brands they don’t follow or aren’t aware of.

The very first ad that popped up was a sponsored photo of a Michael Kors ladies’ watch, displayed on a table, with a caption stating “Pampered in Paris.” Instagram in a note said, “Michael Kors ran the first ad on Instagram this morning, targeting women in the US in a certain age range.” By late Friday, the sponsored photo had garnered more than 181,000 “likes”, along with some comments by unhappy Instagram users.

Instagram currently has about 150 million active users, and Facebook is quite positive in making a good revenue from Instagram. It is also said that Facebook is carefully adding magazine-quality photo ads to Instagram as it hopes to bring in revenue from the service without alienating users.

NASA Adds Instagram to its Arsenal of Social Media Accounts

NASA has always been enthusiastic about its social media presence, be it videos on YouTube, short updates on Twitter or live video feeds on Ustream. Beginning Friday, NASA has now taken Instagram to the moon.

The new @nasa account on Instagram launched this Friday with classic vintage images of the moon and earth. NASA plans to use the account to inspire the public with new content and keep them updated on the image sharing platform.

NASA has since posted pictures of the launch of the agency’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) from Virginia. In two days alone the account has managed to amass a following of 51K and continues to grow like the rockets they keep pushing out.

NASA Instagram

Instagram has a large populace that wants to look at inspiring pictures that are not of the facial or edible kind, and NASA understands that. Press Secretory Lauren Worley said. “Instagram has a passionate following of users who are hungry for new and exciting photos. We believe we have some of the most engaging images on and off the planet — and we can’t wait to engage with Instagrammers.”

If you have an Instagram account, go on, follow NASA on instagram.com/nasa

Facebook Acquires Mobile Technologies, Developer of Jibbigo

Facebook announced in a status update that it has acquired Mobile Technologies, a 12-year old speech recognition and machine translation start-up that developed the app Jibbigo. The terms of the deal, however, were not disclosed.

With the latest acquisition, Facebook looks forward to effectively make use of the voice recognition and translation tools to connect with the rest of the world. Jibbigo is the world’s first speech-to-speech translator that runs both online and offline.

Facebook Acquires “Mobile Technologies”

“Voice technology has become an increasingly important way for people to navigate mobile devices and the web, and this technology will help us evolve our products to match that evolution,” Tom Stocky, Facebook’s director of product management, wrote in a post. “We believe this acquisition is an investment in our long-term product roadmap as we continue towards our company’s mission.

Here’s the full post from Tom Stocky, Director, Product Management at Facebook announcing the acquisition:

Expect a New Facebook Login Page Very Soon

Have you seen one of those Twitter backgrounds with profile pictures of ‘followers’ arranged in a tiled manner? Well, something similar to that is what Facebook is testing for its new login page.

Jash Jacbo, blogger at Techzei, spotted the new Facebook login page that is being tested features a colorful tiled background of profile pictures. The current login page has a plain light-blue background color with new features being highlighted on the left and a sign up form on the right.

Facebook New Login Screen

The new login page design focuses mainly on the sign up form displaying it as a dialog box. The top bar is the same login-bar where users can enter their login credentials to login.

Unfortunately, it was just a test. The new login page only opened up for a few minutes until Facebook decided to switch it was back to the old one.

Instagram Gains Video Sharing Capabilities

During a Facebook press event today, the company announced that Instagram is gaining video sharing capabilities. Videos hosted on the service will be limited to a length of 15-seconds. After shooting said video, the user can choose to apply a filter and then publish the short video to their Instagram followers. These filters have been developed specifically for video files, so they shouldn’t degrade the quality or sharpness of your published video. After a video is edited, the user can choose their favorite scene and set it as a still thumbnail for the clip. Videos on Instagram can be viewed using both the Instagram mobile app or the web interface.

Instagram’s new video functionality is almost a direct response to Twitter’s Vine service. This is due to the fact that Vine also allows users to shoot and share short video clips. However, unlike Instagram, Vine does not allow its users to add filters to their videos.

Personally, I think we’ll see Instagram video takeoff much quicker than Vine. This is due to the fact that millions of people already use Instagram on a daily basis, and since Instagram’s video functionality is built right into the Instagram app, there is no reason for these users not to try video.

Instagram has already rolled-out video functionality to both its iOS and Android apps.

Facebook Home Download Mark Hits 1 Million

A month after its release, Facebook Home has finally crossed the 1 million downloads milestone, after the company released a minor update few days back as a part of its “new every four week” cycle.

However, after the release of Facebook Home, the launcher was heavily criticized by users and was poorly rated in Google’s Play Store. In the first 10 days after its launch, the app was downloaded 500,000 times, however, it took twice as long to hit the other 500,000 downloads. The app has been awarded a cumulative two-star review from the more than 16,700 reviews on its Google Play page.

Facebook Home Ratings

Facebook product director Adam Mosseri said that the latest Facebook Home update includes the following changes and improvements:

  • Chat Heads improvements that make chatting more seamless with fewer steps.
  • A new, full-screen interface for your dock of apps that you can access more simply through a single swipe.
  • Subfolders within the app dock, kind of like you see in the iOS app launcher.
  • More “Blue’s Clues” pop-up prompts to educate users on new features.

Facebook has also said that it is carefully going through most of the valuable reviews and feedbacks given by users on Play Store and has promised that in the upcoming updates it would probably make the necessary changes that users are suggesting.