A week of Twitter

So about about a week ago I signed up a twitter account and started micro-blogging . I’m on 89 updates which is around a dozen a day although this week things are busy with the Blackout Campaign against Section 92a of the new Copyright Act so in a typical week their will probably be less (especially when the novelty wears off). If possible I’m trying to make tweets that might be of interest to other peopleĀ  especially doing things like links to good articles which in the past I sometimes posted to the main blog.

Following people is interesting, for now I just look at the last page that somebody has posted and if it looks interesting (on average) I’ll add them. So I’m following around 50 feed so far and I’ll see how it goes, but since on average the impact of each feed is less than a RSS feed ( ie I’ll usually not scroll back to stuff I missed overnight) I’m not overwhelmed yet.

So far I am using the web interface a bit (which is good for looking at people, their followers and history), twitux at home and twitterfox at work. If you go to my actually blog website you’ll see I’ve added a RSS feed of my tweets (it only updates every hour or so) and I added the Twitme wordpress plug so every time I post to my blog I tweet is sent.

Earlier today I was inspired by nzpolice feeds that Sam Sargeant created and decided to create my own. So I’ve made the nz_quake twitter bot which updates whenever a new Earthquake is reported on the geonet website. The actual bot is just a shell script that checks every few minutes to see if the status page has changed and if it points to a new earthquake (they have unique IDs) it’ll just use curl to connect to twitter’s simple web interface.

It took me around an hour of playing around to implement in around 35 lines of shell script. I’ll have to wait a few days to see how well it works since the webpage only reports the earthquakes that people might have felt rather than every tiny little one.