Ok, I just thought it was timely to point out a new feature of twitter I figured out over the past few days..

Threads :

There is a great article in the guardian here about how using threads in twitter helps pull so much info together… as a case in point, go to http://search.twitter.com/ and click on #mumbai.

You will then see any posts which have been tagged by twitterers to come up here…

So if you happened to be in a scenario where you know others were going to be following you can use the #key to keep them all connected.

(ps to get a # in mac press alt and 3 together)

For an interesting article… check this one out from the guardian

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2008/nov/27/mumbai-terror-attacks-twitter-flickr

ps one final thing I find useful the tinyurl extension for firefox is very handy.

Twitter (part 3)

November 22, 2008

The ins and outs of twitter

twitterbird

Like anything with social media – I guess you have to be careful you know what you’re doing so as you don’t embarrase yourself.  In facebook a lot of peolpe don’t really get the whole wall-to-wall feature, so they flirt away not thinking each post is really that bad, but if you ever click on the link which says wall to wall, you are presented with a whole conversation between two people, which is hilarious, It would be wrong to point any out (but I am very tempted!)

Here are the two main commands (d and @)

d username: sends a private message to a specific individual
Example: @meangrape I love that song too!

@username: sends a public message to a specific individual; this message will archive in their replies tab, and be visible on your profile page
Example: d krissy want to pick a Jamba Juice for me while you’re there?

Here are a few other things that I coppied off the twitter website.  Tracking seems to have been disabled.

3.3. The Official Twitter Commands

Did you know: you can keep Twitter under control from phone, IM, and most 3rd party applications (including Twitterrific!) by using the designated Twitter commands?  Use the commands listed below on all devices for fine-grained control of Twitter updates.

Fun Stuff: friends, favorites, and stats!

There’s more to Twitter than OFF and ON! Use the commands below to send private messages, mark updates as favorites, or even remind someone to update their Twitter if you’re wondering what they’re doing!

  • WHOIS username
  • retrieves the profile information for any public user on Twitter.
    Example: whois jack

  • GET username
  • retrieves the latest Twitter update posted by the person.
    Example: get goldman

  • NUDGE username
  • reminds a friend to update by asking what they’re doing on your behalf.
    Example: nudge biz

  • FAV username
  • marks a person’s last twitter as a favorite. (hint: reply to any update with FAV to mark it as a favorite if you’re receiving it in real time)
    Example: fav al3x

  • STATS
  • this command returns your number of followers, how many people you’re following, and which words you’re tracking.

  • INVITE phone number
  • will send an SMS invite to a friend’s mobile phone.
    Example: Invite 415 555 1212

Twitter Tracking  This feature is currently disabled

Get updates matching specific words, or topics of interest with the track feature.  For example, for updates about the upcoming Coachella concert, send track coachella.  To get the latest buzz about Austin, track SXSW . Track as many words as you want. What’s the catch?  It only works on phone and IM, no API or web tracking…yet!

  • track word: starts tracking a word
  • untrack word: stops tracking a word
  • untrack all: stops tracking all words
  • track off: stops tracking all words
  • tracks: returns a list of words you’re tracking
Hint: track your user name to get an update when someone sends you an @reply!

Noteworthy Facts

  • using on/off username from your device only stops notifications to the device the command comes from; you’ll still collect a person’s updates on the web.
  • using follow/leave username from your device is the same as using on/off username
  • following someone from a device for the first time will also cause you to follow them on the web
  • there is no way to stop following a person on the web without visiting their profile and removing them. The off, leave, stop, and quit commands will only disable updates for the device(s) from which they were sent.
  • you don’t have to use ON/OFF username from IM or phone, you can set individual notifcations from a person’s profile page, or check your following page and manage all friend notifications there.

Twitter (part 2)

November 22, 2008

So last post I explained abit about twitter and why i use it.

This is a little bit more on how I use it, and some thoughts on using it.

Setup

I was recently using a dashboard widget for mac called twitgit This was good, but it didnt seem to hook in to growl or provide anyother way of getting notifications, so i only checked it occasionaly… Then I decided to check out twitterific after using it on the iPhone.  This has really changed the way I use twitter now, as it uses growl notificaitons.  It also pops up the window in a really nice semi transparent sidebar

twitterific

So Pretty cool… and unobtrusive…

Other things

There are a few other great things about twitter. Here is a list for conciseness!

1. A facebook plugin so your tweets are posted to your status (no more status updates)

2. Twitterific can update your skype status too if you use that…

3. You can get text notifications and update from your mobile (not something i’m into)

4. You can upload pictures using twitpic

5. You can upload your location using brightkite.com

Ok that should do it for now… I think there is one post left in this!

Twitter

November 22, 2008

Its been a while since I’ve blogged, but I wanted to write a wee bit about something i’ve been finding more manageable recently.

Twitter

tweet-display
When I first heard about twitter, I went onto the site twitter.com and i couldn’t believe it, it was all these random people all over the world telling me things I didn’t want to know..

Then you could click on these random people and get updates about what they were doing.
I think I was slightly disturbed at the frequency of some peoples “tweets”.  One guy was in a restaurant and was twittering about how annoying the people next to him were… “This is ridiculous” I thought, and pondered the demise of society and how it had just gone too far.

Anyway some time passed – maybe 8 months, and my buddy Stuartie and Keli who are heading off around the world were taking about the best way to keep in touch, and I suggested twitter may be a good way of keeping in touch with people after being lulled back into the beauty of twitter through this site twittervision which is slightly mesmerising… just looking at all the people all over the world twittering at that very moment… I felt slightly like I was hanging out with God getting a God’s eye view on people.  Anyway another intersting way to look at twitter is twistori I love this too, again i find i get drawn to into it.  A funny one someone told me about the otherday was cursebird the design really affects the content, but its interesting to see how you can just scrape stuff off the web.

Acutally we started trying to use twitter at work for a while, just so we all knew what we were working on, and especially for Mark in NZ, he could twitter – “I’m taking the dog for a walk” and we wouldn’t try and skype him wondering why he wasnt answering… Though that didnt really seem to work out, for some reason none of us were really that motivated to twitter stuff like, “i’m answering emails”. Or “I’m having a meeting” when everyone can clearly see that.  But in the interim. Stuartie started twittering away, and it was good to keep up with him and their progress in buying a boat to sail around the world.  Then I noticed a few other peolpe that were folloing him that I knew, and added them to my follow list.

Moving away from facebook.

I’ve been using facebook less and less these days. I still check it occasionly, its great for photos and random connections from years ago, but as far as writing on peoples walls etc and messaging – email is far more reliable… But when facebook app first came out on the iPhone an intersting feature was that the home screen was just a list of your friends status’ really simple, and i actually liked this.
I noticed some people made reference to things like going to see @jimbob for coffee, and figured out they were actually using twitter. All that to say, thats what I use now every day, and find being limited to 140 chars is a good thing. Also you get to hear about things that peolpe generally wouldn’t either blog or email about, and i appreciate links to things, especially business articles, tech updates, etc.

Thats it for now, I’ll do another post about my twitter setup after I put this loaf in the oven.

The iPhone review

September 9, 2008

So i’ve been storing up a little series of iPhone posts for a while now./

I’ll just say, I’m amazed by the little black device and how it has probably made – as a -if not more –  significant a change to my life than switching over to a mac from a pc  about 4 years ago…

Why is it so darned good? – Here is a list of things off the top of my head that are definate life improvements!

1. The Remote App

remote

Control my itunes through my phone.  We use an airport express to wirelessly stream from our laptops to our stereo in our lounge, so having to go and find the laptop and change a track especially if its in the kitchen isnt idea, so now with the remote app, we can change our iTunes via the phone. A-mazing.

2. BBC iPlayer and YouTube

So now your phone is a TV, the key feature of this is being able to play Charlie & Lola for Ruby in the mornings without having to get out of bed (a second time).  Invaluable…
YouTube is also good for watching all the videos that are sent during work hours that i don’t have time to watch!

3. Email. The IMAP email is great. My only request is that they would make it searchable, for those emails that you have to find. You can go on the webmail version, but it would be nice in the app.  Generally I set the download frequency to OFF. That way I only get emails when i want them, rather than 24-7.

The other great thing about email is the ability to view attachments, PDF, docs, images, all work really well. And it handles HTML emails perfectly.

4. Weather. Its great being able to get the weather reports with just one click.

5. Photos. I can upload photos to flickr, and facebook – its perfect.  Please can someone bring a video recorder app out soon!

6. Syncing. The syncing side of life is great. Ok so you need a cable, which i’d prefer to not have to do, but i ordered a spare off amazon, so i didnt have to bring one into work (£2.99). But having all my selected playlists sync-ed and contacts, calendars and email its great.  I’ve also worked out how to cut down my sync time and will post about that later

7. GPS.  This should be at the top of this list. This is incredible, and for someone directionally challenged like me, i love it, the first day I got my phone in glasgow, I was walking out of a meeting and turned it on and realised i was walking the wrong way down Sauchiehall st!  This this is great. And i downloaded a free app called GPS tracker which is pretty cool. Just leave it running and come back and see your route on google maps.

8. iPod. Ok, this is actually my first iPod, and i love it.  I suppose the only bad thing about the 2 in 1 is that i was using it to play some tunes at a party in our garden a few nights ago and someone called me. Not the best… I know i can set it to flight mode, but i guess thats when you need to devices…

Any Negatives…?

Overall not many complaints. A few wee things:

1. Ability to not have it backup every time i connect it.

2. Sometimes its a bit jerky when i’m typing

3. Battery life, although i’ve never not got a full day out of it, but it can be tight!

4. I think you should be able to set profiles, for ringer volume etc, it just rings at the current volume setting.

5. Copy and Paste. Everyone is on about this, but it is so badly needed. Say you are on a website and you want to paste the address into a blog note, or you want to copy a phone number etc. Its crazy this isnt in yet.

6. The 3G reception on O2 is really ropey in Edinburgh. Its fine on wifi and when you can connect on 3G but alot of the time i’m back on GPRS i think. Hopefully orange will get the contract soon…

7. Crashes a lot when installing apps. Although it still amazes me how easy it is to install new apps.

8. No skype.  I wish it had skype messaging, there are others, but skype is what i use…

9. No video camera yet. This again seems crazy when it is possible

10. Not able to send contacts… although i know there are cheap apps now available for this [  EmailContact goes for 99¢ and vCard Mailer goes for $1.99. Both apps work on either the iPhone or iPod touch.]

Roll on the 2.2

Fireworks night

August 31, 2008

Just watched the fireworks on warrender park road. It was nice.

A lead that I need.

August 15, 2008

So after what seems like hours of searching. I finally found what I need.

I don’t know why more people don’t need this, but we have 2 apple cinema displays in the office, and sometimes when they are free, I need to plug a PC into them or a mac without a ADC connector (like a macbook)

Anyway. Here is the link to make a Apple cinema display work on a PC or macbook.

The easiest way is simply to use a USB port.

USB to DVI output

http://www.datapro.net/products/usb-to-dvi-video-adapter.html

http://www.misco.co.uk/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=314378&Tab=2&NoMapp=0

Somebody will thank me for this i’m sure!