What is it?
Facemood :), $1, iPhone. Facemood is a smart little iPhone app that tells you, through a super secret algorithm, how your Facebook friends are feeling at the moment. When your friends make status updates, the app analyzes the words they use (dictionary definitions, word connotations from Urban Dictionary) and applies a point rating to it. So words like "great" get positive points, an 'ecstatic' or 'awesome' would get more. Saying stuff like "down" or "sad" would net them negative points. It all adds up and the app spits out how happy or sad they're feeling.
Trivial? Probably. But super neat! You can find out what the computers and equations think of your friend! If you always thought they were overly emotional, you have proof. If you thought people were too damn cheery, the computers agree. It's nerdy fun to have words translated to "quantifiable" numbers.
Who's it good for?
People who care about their friends. People who don't like to read everybody's status update. People who have a lot of friends they don't get to see often. People who like using apps that implement super secret algorithms.
Why's it better than alternatives?
It's certainly a lot funner than trudging through melodramatic updates or excitable reactions. Like, who cares what they're saying! What's their Facemood score? More seriously, the app has a customizable dictionary that lets you add in some group slang words and apply value to those words too. Most importantly it lets you favorite the friends you really care about (so you can let the rest squabble on in Facebook's maul).
How could it be even better?
The app is a good start but can get better with long term graphs (showing happiness/sadness levels over time), use push notifications to warn you when someone's posted too many sad messages at once, take into consideration multiple updates rather than a single one, make the app faster and stop displaying so many "unable to calculate" options. Basically, the developers should embrace the silliness of the app and run with it. There should also be an option to vote whether you agree with Facemood's rating so they can "learn" you up. And sometimes, cursing is a good thing.
We're always looking for cool apps—for iOS, Android, Windows Phone or whatever else—to feature as App of the Day. If you come across one you think we should take a look at, please let us know.
For more apps, check out our weekly app roundups for iPhone, iPad, and Android