Tag Archives | Twitter

Twitter Fiddles with Replies.. Err "Mentions"

twitterlogoTwitter has fiddled a bit with how it handles those @ replies in a change it says “better reflects how folks are using Twitter now.” Whereas before the @ reply was used at the beginning in a direct reply to the twittee(?), now users are employing the feature in different ways.

For example, instead of a reply, a tweet may include the tweetname of that user as a reference, such as “I’m sitting here blogging with @harrymccracken on @technologizer” which isn’t a direct reply, but more a mention per se, thus the new term (we are shameless about promoting our twitter accounts here aren’t we? Sorry couldn’t resist throwing myself in there.).

Thus, the new Mentions tab, which replaces the Replies tab and is now listed as your twitter account name, will show these indirect tweets as well.

I kind of like this new feature. However, I’d much rather like it if they’d seperate these indirect ones from my direct ones. Especially if your a popular twitterer, you could have hundreds of users mentioning you every day. Your legitimate direct tweets would get lost in the mess.

Still, I think its good Twitter is going to let us know when we’re getting talked about. I can see the positives in that, too.


5Words for March 27th, 2009

5wordsTech stuff, exciting and new:

iPhone SlingPlayer: Cross your fingers!

iPhone Skype’s due soon, too.

How Google could go wrong.

Arrrgh: Tech-company layoffs galore.

Netflix adds new personalization features.

Apple sells contract-free iPhones.

Yes, stars use Twitter ghostwriters.

College computer labs are obsolete.

Eee PC gets optical disc.

Apple announces developer conference dates.

A no-tech hour? Naw.

Get more out of Craiglists.

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"My #1 Twitter Tip…": Smart Advice From 36 Twitterers

Technologizer on TwitterA major part of the world of Technologizer continues to happen over at Twitter, where I’m @harrymccracken (you can also get a simple feed of all Technologizer stories at @technologizer), and the whole Technologizer conversation keeps on keeping on, in convenient bite-sized chunks. My recent post What I Know About Twitter was a hit here, so I decided to collect more Twitter tips by asking some savvy Twitterers–namely, my friends over there–for their best advice. I tweeted:


I need lots of tips for getting the most out of Twitter for a Technologizer story. What’s your #1 tip? If I use, I’ll credit and link to ya.


And I got tons of good tips in return–all of which you can read after the jump.
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Facebook Members Give New Layout Thumbs Down

Facebook LogoFacebook’s new, more Twitter-like interface is overwhelmingly unpopular with users, according to a Facebook application that is polling Facebook users on their feelings about the site’s layout changes. Today, the application’s reported results had just over 5% of the nearly 800,000 respondents approving of the changes. While the poll is far from being scientific, its results are still telling.

Like many of you, I’ve seen my friends complaining the new layout. Some of their gripes focus on how Facebook is mirroring Twitter.

Today one wrote, “I joined twitter and lost interest like *that*. I’m supremely narcissistic in thinking you all care about my whereabouts and status updates all day, but the new layout feels like that’s all Facebook is focusing on now… that functionality existed before the change, but it also allowed me to see wall comments, videos, pics and notes more easily. hatin’ it…”

I have to agree with that assessment. The only major change that I thought Facebook needed was to become more intuitive for the average user. Features like wall comments, videos, pictures and notes differentiate Facebook from Twitter and make it more interesting.

Don’t get me wrong –Facebook’s willingness to change is a good thing. I stopped using Friendster and MySpace because they became stagnant, and Facebook was a better alternative. Facebook’s inclusion of the events stream into its last layout was a good idea, and I started to visit the site more frequently throughout the day–even through my iPhone.

However, Facebook moved too far in Twitter’s direction, and lost some of what makes it unique in the process. It should listen to its customers and make some tweaks to the layout to keep them happy. What do you think?


What I Know About Twitter

twitterlogo[NOTE: Here’s a post that first appeared in our free T-Week newsletter, which you can subscribe to here.]

I don’t claim to be a Twitter genius. (Even though I was flattered when Jason Hiner of TechRepublic recently ranked me #1 among tech Tweeters.) And I’m pretty sure I’m not addicted to Twitter. (Although there’s no social network I enjoy more or spend more time fooling around with.)

After spending a couple of years Tweeting, however, I do feel like I’ve learned a fair amount about how to have fun with it–especially over the past eight months or so, during which it’s become core to my daily online regimen. Whether you think of Twitter as a low-maintenance Facebook alternative or a form of micro-blogging or a hybrid of chat room and party line or something else–and me, I think it’s unique–it isn’t always instantly obvious how to get the most out of it. So herewith, a few Twitter tips. They’re not gospel–no two people use Twitter exactly the same way–but they work for me. (If you’re a total Twitter beginner, start by reading this good guide to the service’s nuts and bolts.)

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Come Join Us on Twitter

twitterlogoFunny but true: More and more, Technologizer has been living a double life. It is, of course, a Web site. But an awful lot of general chatter and discussion of specific T-stories is going on over at Twitter, where I’m @harrymccracken.

(Actually, Technologizer has a triple life if you count the official Technlogizer Twitter feed, which is @technologizer. That one’s an automated feed of all Technologizer posts. But @harrymccracken is a mix of links to posts and original stuff, and it’s far more bustling.)

Below are some of the Tweets I’ve gotten today on my post about the new, extra-minuscule iPod Shuffle–good stuff all. (I’ll probably bring you some other Tweets about Technologizer stories from time to time, too.) If you haven’t checked out Twitter, consider this my personal invitation to stop by and hang out with us there…

iPod Tweets


5Words for March 9th, 2009

5wordsHello. Here’s news for you:

Apple touch-screen netbook rumors.

Best Buy visits Circuit City.

Windows Mobile Marketplace teaser appears.

Wolfram Alpha: important as Google?

The Watchmen on your iPhone.

Google eyeing Twitter? No. Yes.

Should Firefox open a store?

The compact disc turns thirty.

The world’s fastest hard disk.

The megapixel wars: over. Hopefully.

CeBit attendance down twenty percent.

Teen launches YouTube music service.

Google Docs shares documents. Accidentally.

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Twitter Finally Integrates Search. For Me, at Least. And for You, I Hope.

twitterlogoOne of the great mysteries of Twitter–there are several of ’em–is how incredibly slow it’s been to take the obvious step of making search a key feature. (Without it, Twitter is like the world’s largest, noisiest party, not that that’s bad; with it, it starts to get far more useful.) The problem seemed to get solved last July when the company bought the excellent Summize Twitter search engine. But then it failed to integrate Summize –basically, it stuck it in as a link in the footer, as if you were no more likely to use it than you were to read the privacy policy.

Today, at last, I was greeted with real, truly integrated Twitter search (which Twitter had said it was working on) when I popped into the site to see if anyone had Tweeted me. (I’m @harrymccracken there, incidentally.) It’s reportedly not available to everybody yet, but this is surely a good sign.

It’s pretty straightforward, as search should be. The upper right-hand corner of the page now sports a Trends drop-down list (which shows you hot topics at the moment)  and a search box:

Twitter Search

Enter a search query, and results pop right in the Twitter look and feel (until now, they’ve still looked like Summize):

Twitter Search Query

Twitter search, like Twitter itself, is wonderfully real-time–in fact, if you do a search and then pause for a few moments, it may tell you that there are new relevant results since you performed your initial query:

Twitter Idol

None of this is revolutionary in the least, but it’s fabulous to see it front and center. I bet it’ll have a profound effect on how folks use Twitter, and will probably increase the quality of the conversation, since it’ll be so much easier to track down relevant chatter. I know I’ll be using it a lot more, at least–I knew about the old Summize search all along, but it was always just a teensy bit too much of a hassle to call it up.