Personal Analytics – What are you Doing with Facebook

A couple of months back, Wolfram Alpha, an Computational engine I really can’t live without enabled a huge feature, that could let you run Analysis for Free on your Facebook profile, though the Analytics or as Facebook calls it Insights, have been available to Pages owners and now lately to group owners too, but it was not available for Individuals, after all how many Individuals want to know what they are doing on Facebook, they think they know, but then there are Geeks like me, who love numbers, and dig numbers.


So last night I gave the Facebook Analytics a Shot, and thought I will share with you, what I found, and why I think it is cool that you should give it a shot too, and maybe (that is only if you think, you are) get over your addiction of social Media.


Though I do also have a Klout account, but in a conversation with Nimish Dubey, somewhere about it, I also felt that there is no clear logic to how Klout works, it’s nice to have this score and it has gotten me invited to many an events being called an Influencer in Technology (Now I don’t need Klout to tell me that), but getting analytics of how and how much time you are spending on Social Media can be useful, so let’s look at what I found.

Side Note, To Do the Analytics click here to head on to the Facebook Analytics Page, the moment you start the Analytics you will see Wolfram|Alpha pick up the data from facebook and a clarity that your data will only be cached for 1 hour.

The Obvious Bit

Yes, I finally can say I belong to the Generation X for some Categories, and Old Man for a few other, and like some of my friends would call me stupid for calling myself old, I finally know my next birthday is just around the corner.

The Not So Obvious Bit

Though I always knew I was born on Friday and this was from years of playing puzzles as a child with my Mom, when Computers and Search Engines could not tell you this, to reverse calculate the day, but I would love to see how the Moon really was, and what was the weather that day (though My Mom tells me it rained quite a bit, quite a lot) the day I was born, sadly Indian Weather data from that time is not available for Analytics

Now this may just be useless data, or data that you have from your astrologer, but for a number geek like me (yes I love numbers), this was interesting data.

The Slightly Obvious Data – What am I doing on Facebook

Well for me, I know I upload so many pictures every day, thanks to my Cycling Club Green Pedals, I end up taking about 30 – 40 Pictures a day, and thanks to my interest in Photography, that gets me another 100 odd pictures a day, in the past I have been subject to Facebook Limitations, Citing, that the Feature (Picture Upload) is not supposed to be used the way I am using, and at times Banned from Picture uploads, the following Chart Made things clearer to me..

Showing that 92.9% of my activity is uploading photos to facebook, now remember this is for my personal profile and not my public page. Though I do update status’s and post links, but uploading of Photos and working around them seems to be my largest activity.

Where are My Friends Based out of?

Well you can call me a geek, or just downright stupid, on a recent trip to San Francisco, I forgot to inform my friends that I am coming there for 2 days, on my return and posting the pictures I got a lot of flak, I have been wondering how to locate how many friends I have where, as people move, and update their cities, some move on assignments, some just move, and the Map below made things clearer for me, so if you are one of my friends in Real life, and also a friend on Facebook, who knows when I will  be visiting you (you can no longer blame me for it).

What is also interesting is to see a Friends Map, though I have been speaking of 6 Degrees of Separation and how the whole world is connected since the early 1990’s, and my close friends would vouch for it, but when Linked In Happened, the theory of 6 Degrees of Separation and the term got coined, facebook showed us more and more connections, down to this that now we get requests from people saying, Hey How do you know my cousin..the following map shows you how your friends are connected, and the maps around your friends

Now that I have friends and I am posting Pictures What really Happens to Them?

A Good and an Interesting Question is, that I may be posting so many pictures a day, what really happens to them, are people liking them, are people talking about them, are people commenting on them, which one is their favorite, that they liked, and which one is the most commented on, the following snapshot makes it clearer


So What am I really saying, are there words that I use Commonly?

A few days back I realised I was using the word Awesome quite often on Facebook in my comments, and started thinking if I should look for other words to express something that I really felt was Awesome, but how many times and what words does one use, is there a word that is at a stage where you have started abusing it, our Blogs and other analytic engines tell us what are the words people are looking for and talking about, and we geeks call them word clouds, but a personal word cloud, this was the first for me, though it turns out I do use Awesome Quite often, but RIDE is the most commonly used word I have, after all planning, managing and sometimes cancelling a Ride is what I do, do daily.

Is there More?

Yes there is a lot more, Analytics don’t end there, you should go give it a shot and do analytics on your own profile, whether that is to know what is the Gender, Age, etc ratio of your friends, or to find out how you are engaging people, who are your top commentors to looking at your friends network..

Wolfram Alpha is still my most used engine, and remains on top of my sites used, and has made my life easier in a lot of ways, its’ an App that I use on my iPad as well as my default landing page on my Computer Browsers, whether you find use for it, or just call me a number geek, this is a must do on your facebook profile, at least once.

Two Must Read Blog posts about Wolfram Alpha’s Personal Analytics are by Stephen Wolfram himself, and here are the links for it

1. The Personal Analytics of my Life

2. Wolfram|Alpha Personal Analytics for Facebook

Do let me know what you think, and would you go ahead and do these analytics, interesting things that you found out if you did them…