Facebook is a place where you share stories about and view images of everyday life. But it has also morphed into a venue where more than 1 billion people worldwide share and discuss breaking news and personal photos, too. So it's no surprise that 10-year-old Facebook recently launched a free app called Paper, which offers a new way to accommodate users' wide-ranging activities. Here are my impressions.
In terms of look, Paper (for iOS only at this time), is all about pictures. There's one large photo on the top half of the page, something posted by you or your Facebook friends. Below that you'll find all your status updates in a neat row.
Swipe up from the bottom, and one update at a time shows on your display. When the update is all text, it's clean and open, and easy to read. When the update is a photo, it automatically fills your display, which scrolls panorama-style across the picture. The result is again a crisp, clean page for viewing photos.
This is Paper at its most interesting. You choose from a number of topics (19 when I wrote this) to add as sections to your account, including Creators, Flavors, Home, Planet, Score, and Well Lived. Each features a mix of stories from well-known sources and up-and-comers. During a recent snowstorm, I found a recipe for Pistachio-Cardamom Hot Chocolate from a site called Savory Simple, for which I was particularly grateful.