The TwitterAPI and the Super Tweet

February 6, 2009

in Mobility, twitter

I was at the SF Mobile 2.0 Meetup last night where Twitter was the main discussion point. We had short presentations from Twittilator, Twitpic and Twitterfon and then a briefing from @alex who runs Twitter’s API program. I also got to ask a few questions. The answers were candid and from my perspective as a developer useful. Still I want more so I’m going to make them clear here.

What @al3x from Twitter said and my questions:
@al3x did the majority of the presenting for Twitter. He spoke well and the answers were open and forthcoming. Twitter went way “up” in my regard.

When will Twitter enable “location” information to be tied to each tweet? The answer is apparently sometime in the next six months. This is huge for location based services.

Will Twitter let developers have access to the “Tweet” so we can augment the tweet or create a super tweet.
I used the example of Twitpic which currently results in a link which is followed by a user taking the follower off Twitter pages to another site. Eg escalation is always off Twitter. Why shouldn’t the Twitpic be shown under the Tweet in it’s own little box or container? I was surprised by the positive nature of the response and that they had been thinking about it. The biggest concern was they don’t want Twitter to become Myspace like pages. I don’t think they will so I will address the Super Tweet separately.

Twitter also said they will be working with approx 10 clients in the near future who want to use the search results. Eg how do you export the public Twitter fire hose so other can process on it. Currently these search businesses are the only ones that are likely to make money for a developer unless you can sell an app like Twittilator.

oAuth is also in progress. This will solve the number one problem for simple web app twitter developers. The trust factor. The biggest problem is people don’t want to give up their Twitter Password. oAuth is a priority. It also still needs some effective solutions for mobile implementation. For more on what Alex and Matt from Twitter said see Alex’s presentation.

Separately
Thanks fot Mark Plakias adn the Orange team for sponsoring. They have a great space and provided a warm welcome for all. Thanks to Lars Kamp and the rest of the organizers.

It was particularly interesting to hear Andrew Stone’s background story as he’s been working on the  iPhone effectively from NeXt computing days. I now understand why Twittelator Pro is geeked out the way it is. It also again shows for anyone that doesn’t have it on an iPhone how far you can push the Twitter API and iPhone devkit.

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