Thursday, March 19, 2009

I have a .plan

A couple months ago I found out what Twitter was. In some ways I'm a bit behind the times. Besides the VMS joke, I mean.

A few weeks ago I also found out that Facebook was the new king of social networking sites, and it accepted a Twitter feed.

Neither Facebook nor Twitter interest me. But since someone needs to help organize the neighborhood's stay-at-home parents I thought I should be learn about social networking. So last night I made a Facebook account. Today, during Smiley's afternoon nap, I made a Twitter account.

Lo and behold, I have more than 40 friends who already use Facebook, including some I had lost contact with and am very happy to be in touch with again.

Many of these friends are too busy to read a friend's blog posts but do read short Twitter messages. It would be nice to use Twitter to keep in touch with these non-blog-reading friends, but without inconveniencing myself. What should I do? Some Google searches to the rescue!
  • The FireFox addon TwitterBar allows me to contribute a Twitter message from the browser's address bar, so I do not have to go to any webpage.
  • The Facebook Twitter application duplicates all non-reply Twitter messages as Facebook status messages.
  • The Twitter HTML widget creator allows me to put my most recent Twitter message on my blog and links home page.
  • The RSS feed for your Twitter messages is on your page, not your home page. Finding the RSS feed for your Facebook status messages requires excavation.
So now I need never go to Facebook or Twitter again! When I start using the internet my home page reminds me what I last wrote. I can write something new in the address bar of the browser. My friends that follow Facebook or Twitter get to hear from me, and I am minimally inconvenienced.

I'm sure I actually will go to Facebook every few days, to read how my friends who do not blog are doing. But it is nice to have an unobtrusive system that allows me to send out what I think of as mini-blog messages.

UPDATE: TwitterBar is now HootBar.

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