Heal Your Church WebSite


Teaching, rebuking, correcting & training in righteous web design.

The Facebook Activity Feed Widget Plugin for WordPress

I’m pleased to announce the initial release of my 2nd social media plugin, the Facebook Activity Widget Plugin for WordPress. Simply put, it automates the display of a Facebook Activity Feed on the sidebar of your blog by making it a easy-to-configure widget.

(This is a new and different plugin than my Facebook Like Button Plugin for WordPress I deployed last week.)

For those who may not be aware of what the Facebook Activity Feed is, it is a ‘social plugin’  displays the most interesting recent activity taking place on your personal website and/or blog. Since the content is hosted by Facebook, the plugin can display personalized content whether or not the user has logged into your site.

The activity feed displays stories both when users like content on your site and when users share content from your site back to Facebook.  You can read more about this over on  the Facebook Activity Feed reference page.

Update April 30, 2010

Okay folks, version 0.2 is out, and now you can:

  • run as many sidebar widgets that your bandwidth can tolerate;
  • pick border colors with a little dialog box (still a little buggy for my tastes);
  • and as always, the plug-in is translation ready (thanks to those of you who’ve been contributing files to my other plugin!-)

NOTE – for those of you early adopters, looks like the WordPress repository did NOT give me the file name/path I requested.

So unfortunately, deactivate and delete version 0.1 before installing v0.2. Yeah, I know, whatta  pain.

Installation & Use

I also wanted to keep it simple, so here’s how it works — using the standard WordPress plugin installation process:

  1. Upload the ‘fbactivitywidget.zip’ file to the `/wp-content/plugins/` directory using wget, curl of ftp.
  2. ‘unzip’ the ‘fbactivitywidget.zip’ which will create the folder to the directory `/wp-content/plugins/fbactivitywidget`
  3. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress
  4. Go to the Widets submenu option of the Appearance menu
  5. Drag and drop the widget entitled ‘Facebook Activity Widget’ into widget-enabled the sidebar of your choice
  6. Configure the newly dragged-n-dropped plugin through ‘Facebook Activity Widget’ contol box on the sidebar
  7. Modify the fields to choice and click save..

Here’s a screen shot below of the Appearance/Widgets screen (you’ll want to click on it to see it full size):

A screenshot of the FBActivity Feed Widget Setup Screen in action

Everything is pretty obvious from there – with the exception of the ‘domain’ parameter. Basically, it is the domain of your personal website and/or blog without the “http://” or “www.” prefixes.

You specify a domain to show activity for. The domain is matched exactly, so a plugin with site=healyourchurchwebsite.com would not include activity from obfuscator.healyourchurchwebsite.com. According to Facebook, currently you cannot currently aggregate across multiple domains.

Here’s how the FaceBook Like button appears on my own sidebar (in case you’re not reading this post from the front page :-):

How the Facebook Activity Feed Widget appears on a blog.

Download It

Also, I’m currently in the process of setting getting established with the WordPress SVN and everything else that goes with publishing an official WordPress plugin.

The plugin is now available from the WordPress Repository, until I can get the plugin its ownhome on the WordPress Plugin repository. Keep in mind it is version 0.1 version 0.2 - so expect more to come!

Download the Facebook Activity Feed Plugin for WordPress

As NOTED before, if you implemented version 0.1, de-activate and delete first before installing 0.2 and later versions.

Other Facebook Social Plugins

I don’t know if I’m going to build an entire suite of Facebook Social Plugins for WordPress, but with today’s deployment, that at least gives me two.

In case you’re not a regular at this blog, last week I delivered: The Facebook Like Button Plugin for WordPress.

Unlike it’s cousin here, will display the Facebook Like Button above and/or below your posts and/or pages.

FYI

I said this in my last post … but it bears repeating … please don’t forget to click the FaceBook Like Button for this post … I’d appreciate it.