Stanford-students’ FB app gets rid of coding for app-makers

Posted by at 1:41PM

It’s that time of year again…no not Thanksgiving…well, yes, but also….(drum roll) the Facebook fbFund competition! The competition is an opportunity for new entrepreneurs to receive funding for applications they have created. It may seem hard, but the purpose of this competition is to bring new depth to the incredibly deep pool of apps that already exist on Facebook. The 2nd round of the competition is going on right now between 25 apps that have been selected out of a group of over 600. The top 5 of these remaining apps that get the most votes by Nov. 30 will receive over $225,000 in funding.
I was browsing through the apps in this year’s competition — which range from apps where you can “give thanks” or create digital wedding books to those letting you browse wine lists or compare prices. One of the stand-outs this year is an application called Daikon. This app was made by Stanford students (surprise, surprise), and is in fact the only Stanford-submitted app in the competition (this surprised me, given all the application hype going on last year on campus). The basic idea behind Daikon is that it lets you build your own application without any coding or programming knowledge whatsoever. Think DreamWeaver but for Facebook. Yes, you can get your friends to add the app after you make it, and yes, you can publish it in the Facebook app directory so strangers can add it too.
In terms of functionality, the apps you create with Daikon can do a wide range of things: from selling t-shirts to promoting an event for a student group to even making a Hannah Montana fan club. What’s cool is that you can actually make useful stuff that helps in daily life (yes, Hannah Montana is important). The app interface is good, but I did have difficulty figuring out how to actually get my finished app published on Facebook. Fortunately the developers included a step-by-step wizard to help you when you get to this part. Overall I liked this app a lot, and would love to see it become a permanent fixture of FB. My advice to the makers –- add more widgets and templates to let people create more types of apps. I give Daikon a rating of 8 out of 10.
You non-engineering majors should check it out here (just kidding engineers — you can check it out too)
And vote for it in this year’s competition
Here’s the promo:

Daikon from Yuri Yamaguchi on Vimeo.

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