Twitter as a “personal submarine and periscope”


Great post by JP Rangaswami over at Confused Of Calcutta about his personal use of Twitter that I totally relate to…
Twitter is my feed aggregator. One of the ways I interact with the web is through RSS, and over the years I’ve tried to find better and better ways to filter the firehose. Inspecting blogrolls. Shared OPMLs. You name it. I’ve used a number of different aggregators, now I use Twitter as a pseudo-aggregator.
Twitter is my attention enhancer. One of the ways I interact with the web is through collaborative filtering and voting, some way of getting the right stories to the surface, stories from people I don’t know, stories about people I don’t know. Again, over the years, I’ve tried to find better and better ways to let other people filter the firehose for me, using tools ranging from StumbleUpon to Digg and a whole lot in between. Now I use Twitter to surface the stories that matter, particularly with the growth of retweeting.
Twitter is my bookmarking service. One of the ways I interact with the web is through the use of bookmarking services, some way of identifying stories I want to get back to later. The use of tags has helped in this regard, particularly when combined with search engines. The ability to save bookmarks at browser level has also helped, but caused its own problems for a while, when the bookmarks used to be locked into the specific machine. Now those problems have been solved with bookmarking services, but I find I’ve tended more and more to discover the stories via Twitter. So now I “favourite” the tweet instead.
Twitter is my emergent searchable web and engine. One of the ways I interact with the web is through the use of search engines, particularly Google. So to some extent I am reliant on how sites and pages are tagged, spidered, indexed. But now something else is happening. Instead of metatags embedded in sites, I have tweets. 140 characters of description written by someone, 140 characters of freeform searchable text available via Twitter Search (I still think of it as Summize, I’m old that way). So when I look for something, one of the places I go to first is Twitter Search.
Read the full post here – Thinking about Twitter: a submarine in the ocean of the Web.

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  1. […] Rangaswami wrote about this recently (I summarised in my post Twitter as a “personal submarine and periscope”), and whether you are addicted to it or not (for good or bad reasons!) it is a new means of […]

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