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<Introduction to Facebook APIs ⁄ >




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Before covering the Facebook SDK for Android, it is important to understand the Facebook Platform and its APIs. According to Facebook, the Facebook Platform allows anyone to "build social applications on Facebook and the Web." To enable you to build such applications, Facebook offers an extensive collection of core and advanced APIs and SDKs (see Resources).

The core Facebook Platform API is the Graph API that allows you to read and write data to and from Facebook. Facebook also has what is called the Old Rest API. The newer Graph API changes the API paradigm from a method-oriented way of reading and writing data to and from Facebook to a new way that uses objects (think user profiles, friends, posts, photos, likes, and so on) and their relationships or connections with each other. This approach simplifies the Facebook API and makes it more consistent when working with objects. Note that while the Graph API is the preferred Facebook API, the Old REST API is still active and supported. Both the Graph and the REST APIs are applicable to mobile applications, both native and mobile web applications, including mobile web content within native applications through the use of WebViews.

Graph API objects are assigned a unique ID and are easily addressable using a URL that can be further qualified to address a specific object/connection. The general structure of an object URL is as follows: https://graph.facebook.com/OBJECT_ID/CONNECTION_TYPE where OBJECT_ID is the object's unique ID and CONNECTION_TYPE is one of the connection types supported by the object. For example, a page supports the following connections: feed/wall, photos, notes, posts, members, and so on.



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