Tag Archives: twitter-client

Catching up with Dave Olsen from HootSuite at SXSW

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We were able to snag some time with HootSuite’s Dave Olsen during the Source Code pre-premiere party at SXSW. Dave is excited about the recent announcement by his company about their new tool: HootSuite Social Analytics.

The tool is designed to give you a better idea of what’s going on in your social space with more powerful analytics tools, different ways to measure and reports you can customize. All of these components are designed to help you track the success of your campaign and help you gauge what the return is on your social media investment.

Using the tool, you can track your Twitter brand mentions, measure your profile follower growth, examine your Likes and demographics on Facebook, overlay social link clicks and website visits from Google and choose from more than thirty report modules to plug into the customizable report templates.

Dave is quick to point out that tools such as HootSuite are relied upon by people needing to get a message out quickly. This holds very true when there are significant world events, such as the recent earthquake in Japan and the uprisings in Egypt and other countries. People tend to turn to mediums such as Facebook and Twitter over other means of communication when they spread the word about rallys, meetings and even fund-raising drives. Social media is a much faster and more effective form of communication when you want to get your point across to a lot of people very quickly.

It’s very cool to note that during the time much of the Internet was blocked in Egypt, HootSuite continued to work. Even though the actual Twitter and Facebook sites were not accessible, the client was. This caused a huge growth spurt for the company. Dave felt that in some small way, their product was the voice of freedom in the country.

Which Twitter Client is Right for You?

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Dylan is talking today about his love of HootSuite as a Twitter client. He hates having to run extra apps and software on his machine, such as Adobe Air. HootSuite is nice and simple, and uses very little resources.

HootSuite touts itself as a social media dashboard, and not just a Twitter client. Manage multiple social networks, track your statistics and add team members to your account, right from within one simple interface.

There are even more goodies to be uncovered in this little program:

  • Add custom link parameters for tracking clicks and gathering information on your audience.
  • View, manage, schedule and post directly to your WordPress blog from HootSuite.
  • See who’s following you and who you’re following, see their Klout score and manage your Lists.
  • Upload images and files right into your messages. The files are instantly converted into super-short Owly links for space saving and easy sharing.
  • Provide rich, nourishing content to your followers at any time of day using the HootSuite tweet scheduler.
  • Know what Tweet your followers are replying to with our threaded conversation.

Which Twitter desktop client are you using, and why?

Thanks to Dylan for another excellent tutorial. Keep an eye out for a new video from him on our channels every Friday.

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Twitter Client for Windows: blu

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Marques has found a Windows-only Twitter client called blu that he wanted to share with all of you. blu features a lot of eye candy and comes in quite a polished and clean package, which many of you will appreciate.

With blu you can view unlimited tweets. Just keep scrolling and more tweets will be loaded and displayed automatically. Replying to a tweet couldn’t be easier: just click the reply icon and the tweet you’re replying to will flip, revealing a entry field. Direct messages and re-tweets work the same way.

Usually, there isn’t a good way to see the first part of a conversation on Twitter. With blu, simply click on the arrow before the username and voila! Your tweet will flip in-place revealing the first part of your conversation.

There’s tiny URL integration, a way to easily “Favorite” the best messages from those you follow and a nice large numerical backsplash behind your composition box to let you know how many more characters you can type.

Thanks, Marques, for another excellent screencast.

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What is the Best Twitter Client?

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Marques has created another screencast for us. This time, he is showing off an Adobe Air Twitter client called DestroyTwitter.

This client has an unbelievably light footprint. The installer is under 1mb in size, and the memory usage can run as low as 25mb. That’s nearly unheard of, especially for something that packs in so many features.

One cool thing that I really like about DestroyTwitter is the filtering options. If you’re sick of seeing those checkins, why not filter out everything coming from Foursquare or Gowalla? If a friend is attending an event you really don’t want to hear about, filter out the hashtag or event name to remove them from the stream while still seeing everything else your friend has to say.

DestroyTwitter is a Twitter client, not an every-social-network-in-the-world client. Because of this, the UI is focused—not cluttered with unwanted services.

I like that! If I wanted to see every other social network, I’d get a client for that. There are many times, though, that I only want to see Twitter. There are many people, also, who always only want to see Twitter.

There are several nice features built into DestroyTwitter to give you an overall better user experience. Change the font size or icons. Choose between six different notification sounds – or turn them off completely. Read up to 200 tweets every thirty seconds. (If you can do that – color me impressed!)

Another excellent feature is the username auto-complete. You don’t have to memorize everyone’s Twitter handle – just the first few letters. How cool is that?

Thanks, Marques, for another excellent screencast.

What is the best desktop Twitter client out there?

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What Do You Think About TweetDeck?

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One person who called the live stream recently wanted to know my thoughts on the TweetDeck application. It’s good enough, I suppose. I happen to feel it’s too cluttered, and doesn’t have a good user experience overall.

It is running on the Adobe Air platform. One of my largest frustrations with Adobe Air is that I cannot scroll sideways. There are so many columns in TweetDeck that you really need to be able to do this. Who actually clicks on a scroll bar to scroll around? No one does, that’s who! I want to be able to scroll in whatever direction I need. If an application doesn’t support this, it’s a giant step backwards.

If I navigate through my various Twitter accounts, I tend to use CoTweet at this point in time. I’ve yet to see a client that handles Twitter seamlessly and provides all of the functionality that I would hope for.

What are your thoughts?

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What is the Best Twitter App?

I won’t bother to ask how many of you are on Twitter. The answer to that is usually a raised eyebrow and a “duhhhh” on your part. I will ask what client you are using, though. There are a lot of options out there, and I think I’ve tried them all. I’ve hated many of them, and enjoyed a few. However, I have to say that the best Twitter client I have ever used is the Twitter App – especially on the iPad. This app is simply stunning. That’s all there is to it.

“Twitter for iPad brings your Tweets together with web pages, photos, videos and more. Tap on any tweet, and a related content pane will open, displaying any linked content from the tweet, including web pages, profile information, hashtag searches and similar users. Slide panels from side to side and quickly navigate through related content.”

Look at the clarity in the photo above. Even with the lower quality due to resizing and being a photo (instead of the app itself), you can tell how great it looks. It packs a hell of a lot of features inside without feeling as though it’s trying to do too much – like what we’ve seen in other apps.

There are three important ways that Twitter for the iPad works as well as it does:

  • Panes – Tapping on any tweet will open a new pane on the right. Depending on what’s in that tweet message, you’ll see a video or photo, a news story or another tweet. You can still tap on tweets, open new panes and read more content for as long as you wish. It’s simple to move between panes by swiping right or left.
  • Media – Whenever you tap on a video link (or open a web page that has a video embedded on it), you can play it inline. Sometimes, video can take forever to load. The panes let you look through your timeline while the video loads. This keeps you from getting impatient with load times and just giving up. Swipe back to the video whenever it’s ready to play. Also, you can simply pinch a video to play it full-screen!
  • Gestures – Pinch a tweet to view details about the person who wrote it and to reply or retweet it. Put two fingers together and pull down on the tweet to check out replies to it. This shows you the entire conversation leading up to that tweet.

Did you catch that last sentence? Here, let me make it easier for you by showing it to you again: This shows you the ENTIRE CONVERSATION leading up to that tweet. It’s about time there was an easy way to do this! How many times have you read something on Twitter and thought “WTF is that about?!” Sometimes, we can’t make sense of half the shit people say on Twitter without clicking through twenty times to get to the original message.

No, this isn’t the only client or app that can do this. However, it IS the best one, in my mind. I challenge you to show me something better.

What client do YOU use? Why do you prefer it over others that are available?

Twittelator Pad is the iPad Twitter App to Beat

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If you have an iPad and a Twitter account, you owe it to yourself to check out the Twittelator app. This app is as close to the web experience as I’ve ever seen on an external client. It is very full-featured, and incorporates almost all of Twitter’s features. You’ll find geo-location, lists and list management, adding and blocking of people and more. All of these features are hidden in a good way. They are brought up quickly with a gesture when you need them and won’t clutter up the interface when you don’t.

The clean layout is fluid and has a lot of room. It takes excellent advantage of the iPad screen real estate. It doesn’t feel “cluttered” as so many apps tend to. The integrated web browser is genius. You can mail, tweet and open links in the native Apple Safari browser.

You can set your own wallpaper to make the app more of a “you” experience. Another cool little feature is that the app will automatically split up long tweets to allow longer messages. This may seem like a bit of overkill. After all – aren’t Tweets supposed to be less than 140 characters? Whether or not you’re a fan of extending those limitations, you have to agree that having the option to do so is a good one.

This really is an excellent client… the best I’ve tried for the iPad thus far. If you have other recommendations, email them to me so I can try them out. Being a Twitter addict – and an iPad aficionado – tends to make me demand the best of the best.

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Twitter for Android

A few weeks ago, the Twitter team announced that we would be seeing a Twitter client coming soon to Android devices. The app has become available sooner than we thought, as announced on the official Twitter blog today. “When apps work well with each other, sharing becomes as second nature on machines as it does in person. The Android platform is really good at that, and we’ve worked with the Android team to make it super easy to share what’s happening.”

The app makes it easy to stay connected. You can access your timeline by using the home screen widget. Check out a friend’s location on a map in seconds. Or, you can see your contacts’ latest messages in your address book, GoogleTalk list or any other app that uses the Android QuickContact bar. You don’t have to click through twelve different screens to find out what’s happening at any given moment.

Likely the best part of this news is the fact that the entire code will be open-sourced in the near future: “We had a great time working with the Android team and are thrilled that Google will be open sourcing the code used in this app in the near future. We look forward to the amazing experiences developers will create using Twitter APIs in their upcoming Android apps.”

This could bring some seriously cool apps from many talented developers. I know we have a few of you in our community already working on creating Android apps. What are your thoughts about the Twitter app? What do you think can be done to make it even better than it already appears to be out of the gate?

Twitter Survey Wants to Know What You Think

If you’re a Twitter user, the service is hoping you can spare 140 seconds of your time to help make the site even better. There are seven short questions which will ask your opinion on a variety of things.

What type of people do you follow? What Twitter client do you use and recommend to others? Why do you use the popular social networking service? These are a few of the things you’ll see when you click to take the survey. The question that remains, though, is why Twitter suddenly wants your feedback.

With the recent acquisitions, it’s safe to assume we’ll be seeing some major changes coming down the pipeline. It’s quite possible that Twitter may use these results to develop (or buy) more apps in the near future. Could we see more functionality added to the new ad service? Another way to look at it, according to ReadWriteWeb, “is that we get to see what third-party clients and services are on Twitter’s radar and exactly how the company sees itself.”

If you do choose to fill out the survey, you have the option of giving up your Twitter handle (and email address). This may open up a chance for you to test new products in the future. I know that many of you (especially developers in our community) will be interested in that potential opportunity.

I took the survey myself just prior to writing this article. I was surprised at the lack of choices when asked what type of people I follow. Why would anyone assume that I only care to follow experts, news sources and famous people? Yes, there’s an option for coworkers and family/friends. However, a large number of the people I follow don’t fit into any of the given categories. I had to come up with one word to write in the “other” spot – trying to pigeon-hole these people together.

When I neared the bottom of the survey, it struck me that this entire thing deals with one thing: which clients we prefer. They’re trying to gauge how old we are and where we come from, yes. However, the focus appears to be on our preferences when it comes to HOW we tweet. This is pure speculation, but what are the odds that the gang at Twitter may go so far as to hire a few developers in the very near future? Can you imagine them taking the best parts of the clients we like and creating something completely different? That, my friends, would likely be the best client of all.

Photo courtesy of The Next Web Conference

Twitter Buys Tweetie and Promises iPad App

Do you know why you are only allowed to have 140 characters in every tweet? When the site first began, it was geared towards people who used SMS to update their status messages. To this day, the team behind the scenes remains dedicated to mobile users. They recognize that being able to tweet while on the go is crucial. Many of us communicate with business contacts and family members by jotting off a quick tweet. We need an app that works without being complicated to figure out and maneuver around in.

After carefully analyzing the iTunes store, Twitter CEO Evan Williams and his team realized that most of us are simply not happy with the mobile apps on the market right now. Ev and the gang feel strongly that people everywhere should be able to access Twitter “without friction or confusion.”

To help cut through that confusion, Twitter just announced that they have entered into a deal to buy the Tweetie app. Tweetie is one of the more popular iPhone clients, and has been selling for about three dollars on iTunes. In coming weeks, the application will be renamed to Twitter for iPhone, and will become a FREE download.

Williams hints in the announcement that more developer opportunities will be opening up in the future: “Developers, services, and publishers will be able to leverage the Twitter iPhone and iPad applications to create additional innovative tools and integrations for users. Millions more active, engaged, mobile users means more opportunities for all of us.”

Tweetie creator Loren Brichter is going to become a member of the Twitter mobile team. Future plans include launching a Twitter iPad app with Loren’s guidance.