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Facebook gears up to announce 'life-saving' tool

CEO Zuckerberg to go on Good Morning America Tuesday to announce tool

April 30, 2012 01:33 PM ET

Computerworld - Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg is taking to the network news Tuesday to announce a new tool that is supposed to have the power to save lives.

ABC News announced Monday that reporter Robin Roberts will interview Zuckerberg about the new tool on Good Morning America Tuesday morning. The interview will be conducted in the social network's new offices in Menlo Park, Calif.

Facebook declined to say what the new tool will do or what it will be called.

Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg also will get in on the press rounds and will talk about the new tool with Diane Sawyer on ABC's World News program. According to ABC, Sandberg will talk about the personal stories that led Facebook to release the new tool.

Snippets from both interviews will be aired on Nightline and ABCnews.com.

While Facebook has not revealed what the tool will do, Zeus Kerravala, an analyst with ZK Research, said the social network is in the perfect position to come up with something really helpful.

"Facebook has location info, so it knows where you are," Kerravala said. "It also knows who you are and who is in your network, including family. With that kind of information, they could build an applet that allows you to broadcast emergency messages through Facebook."

That kind of tool would be a good practical use of social networks, he added. It could help users and it also would help Facebook become even more ingrained in users' lives.

"Just think, Facebook could send a push notification to anyone you choose in your network that you're in trouble," he said. "It's now the best, fastest way of sending info to everyone in your life."

covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at Twitter @sgaudin, on or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed Gaudin RSS. Her email address is sgaudin@computerworld.com.

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