Dan Wood is co-owner of Karelia Software, creating programs for the Macintosh computer. He is the father of two kids, lives in the Bay Area of California USA, and prefers bicycles to cars. This site is his older weblog, which mostly covers geeky topics like Macs and Mac Programming. Go visit the current blog here.
Useful Tidbits and Egotistical Musings from Dan Wood
Earlier this afternoon, Alex Payne announced on Twitter the availability of some new APIs, built by Matt Sanford that would allow programmers to make use of the searches and trends found at search.twitter.com
I checked it out, from curiosity, and immediately thought of an interesting use of this. Why not set up a twitter account that people can follow to hear about the "trending topics" of people's twitter messages? You could follow that account, and learn about the things which people around the twitterverse are talking about.
I was stunned to find that the account "trending" was not yet taken. So I set up an account and got to work on a quick little project.
And I mean quick. After just an hour or two of programming and setting up a simple database, I had my "bot" set up. Every five minutes, it checks the latest topics, and checks to see if anything is new. If it is, it posts each topic, along with a URL to perform that search on the web, as a new tweet.
It took a while to wait around for some new topics to come on the horizon, in order to verify that the automatic aspect was working properly. But, about three hours after the announcement, I announced this new account/service.
So if you use Twitter, give it a whirl — follow trending. It's fascinating to become aware, in real time, of what people are twittering about.