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Getting The Best Out Of Twitter – Introducing MrTweet

My Twitter mood is continuing these days. After a general post about twittering heights and a more technical one about hashtags in Twitter, today I’ll write a short review of one of the most useful applications you can try to enhance your Twitter experience.

The application is web-based and you can find it at mrtweet.net. MrTweet offers two simple, yet powerful features so far – the app is very young, 4 weeks at the date of this post, if I’m not wrong – and those are

  • listings of your followers that you should follow back
  • listings of the key influencers in your network

In order to measure the quality of the followers you should follow back and to define the “influencer” MrTweet uses a few ad-hoc metrics.  Based on what you already have in your network of followers, MrTweet will harvest a report, in fact, just a simple list. The report shows near each person their ratio of following / frollower, the number of tweets per day and the recipricity: how that person replies or not to non-follows. On top of that, it shows a list of the persons in your network who are already following that person, and, if you really want to know more, it also shows you the latest tweets of that person in your browser. And of course, if you like the guy, you can follow him on Twitter from within MrTweet website.

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Taxonomic Twitter

In another post about Twitter I wrote extensively about the implications of this service from a behavioral perspective. It seems that I’m quite in a “twitter mood” lately since I’m writing another post so close to the first one and I’m planning another one for the upcoming days. Right now I would like to share something more technical about this.

It’s about an attempt to make Twitter even sharper and thinner, by using some sort of taxonomy, or in plain english, a method of grouping together posts by putting “labels” on them. Twitter already has a max limit of 140 characters for each post, and chances for this to grow up are likely to be zero. At least for now. So, in order to increase the readability of the tweets, all work must be done “inside” this 140 characters limit. And the way they’re trying to this is by using some extremely scaled down mark-up language.

They’re called hashtags and they are a way of identifying zones of related content. For instance, if you’re going to tweet a lot about raw food, you can insert somewhere into the tweet something like this “#rawfood”. The “#” sign will have the role to identify the string after it as a marker. Everything with a “#” in front will actually become a label. So every time you will be tweeting about raw food, you will group your tweets into a larger category of possibly related tweets. If somebody else will tweet about the same things and they’ll use the same marker, your tweets will be grouped together.

Using Hashtags Implications

First of all, there will be less room for the actual information. Every hashtag will eat some space out of the 140 characters, leaving less space for the original content. Chances are that your content could be grouped in more than one category, or marker and you’ll be inclined to use more than one hashtag in your tweet. If a consistent API would be provided for working with those hashtags – and chances are that there will be some hooks sooner than we think – then a lot of applications would be using that. Turning Twitter into a searchable catalog is just around the corner. There is a great potential for advertisers and even for people who are trying to promote their blogs or products. It would be the easiest way to direct your tweet to the intended category of readers.

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Twittering Heights

It’s not a secret that Twitter, the 140 characters blogging service has become mainstream. For those of you living on planet Mars, who haven’t yet heard about it, Twitter is a place where you can communicate in a very short way -  140 characters maximum – the answer to a very simple question: “What are you doing?”. Other people may follow you, meaning they will actually see what are you doing / writing. And you can follow other people too, meaning that you can see what they are doing. Simplicity at its best.

But out of simplicity the best things in our life came. And out of simplicity you can create some of the most interesting and challenging things in your life. In today’s post I’ll try to share my opinions on using Twitter in the last few months. I’m approaching my 1000th update on Twitter and that will be one important milestone in my Twitterer career. Joking, of course.

All About Me Versus Sharing Others

Being on Twitter and being engaged in social interactions on this media is a surprisingly interesting activity. Most of the time you’ll be inclined to respond to that fundamental question: “What are you doing?” and unveil your life and day to day activities in short, yet compelling pieces of informations.

But after a while and after reading other people’s timelines you’ll find the need to share some pieces of other people’s life. You’ll start to re-tweet (quote) other people ideas, links, quotes or findings. You’ll start to be a broadcaster for others. In fact, you’ll soon find that one of the key metrics in being a successful twitterer is the “me versus other” ratio. And by “successful twitterer” I don’t mean a popular one, but a person who extracts the best value out of this.

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