New design for Facebook profiles launched in DecemberYesterday Facebook changed its profile page layout. It sees the new design more closely aligned with smartphone user interfaces, and launches its initial attack on LinkedIn.

What struck me first off it’s alignment with the need for bringing sites more in line with its ‘touch’ user interface on smartphones such as the iPhone and HTC. It makes sense – after all there’s an immediate familiarity as more and more users interact with the web this way. Secondly there’s a saving on design time, whilst the development is fresh – visually it can ‘borrow’ elements from the newer U.I. bringing a more coherent feel.

What Facebook has, which LinkedIn doesn’t, are the visual connections to others; social relationships and transparency with whom you choose to share with. All crucial elements business in a new decade founded on business relationships.

What I found most interesting being in charge of Digital matters in my job – was that it sees your job title, and education presented first and foremost after your name: a bold move away from its alter ego as a ‘time sink’. It’s a seemingly brazen approach on the professional social network LinkedIn, and no doubt reflects it’s core user age rising, and their increased use of the site as a professional networking tool. Business is increasingly founded on personal relationships with others. A realness, honesty, and openness which sites such as LinkedIn struggle to achieve as well as Facebook can – providing you don’t share TOO much in your settings of course.

Facebook engineer Josh Wiseman highlighted the potential for detailed work histories and educational background in a press conference recently:

“You can list the projects you worked on at your job, classes you took in school… personally, I opted to add this profile project to my work history at Facebook, and I tagged the people who worked on it with me.”

That’s not to say it’s all work and no play, one of the best new features shows a history of your relationship with any of your Facebook friends. It displays such details as comments you’ve exchanged and places you’ve visited together.

However, in contrast from its new professional makeover, there are new and GREAT ways to fight back. You can now tag friends on the sports section. So tomorrow I’ll develop a keen interest in extreme mountain masturbating, and tag my nearest and dearest. WIN. And finally, as my profile demonstrates; the linear photo layout means you can, if you wish, create messages by uploading in reverse order at a size of 97x68px. Yes, I AM a nerd.

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