>> Thursday, January 24, 2008
Just showing off a sweet convergence of programs I’ve got running… First off, I use Twitter. I only have a couple of followers/followees (and of the followees only one posts with any regularity) so I haven’t really even explored the social micro-blogging aspect of the tool. Might be interesting to delve into; I’ve read about a lot of other uses Twitter has in this respect, such as creating a corporate identity, say MRMPLS, and having all its employees follow it for quick announcements wherever they may be. Could be useful. Even if you don’t have a text-messaging plan, as I do not, Twitter can be very useful. In fact, it’s easier to use if you add the Twitter bot to your IM list.
If I can veer a little off-subject for a moment, I’d also like to mention www.meebo.com here. I may have talked about it before, but it’s ultra-convenient in that it has nearly all the features of all the regular IM clients, but it’s online and does not need to be installed. Thus, the preferences and friends lists that you have on it (such as the Twitter bot) carry with you from computer to computer – you have your regular access anywhere you are.
I’ve found Twitter is most useful as a gateway, feeding data into other programs. On Facebook I’ve installed TwitterSync which polls my Twitter status and applies any newly-posted change to my Facebook status. This is nice because I can post once and announce twice, so to speak. (I thought for one week that TwitterSync was causing some problems with my status, but now I’ve realized it was the alpha version of 8hands – another cool toy but not ready for prime time just yet)
I’m into health-related issues in a big way, and thus I have stumbled onto www.tweetwhatyoueat.com. This lets you track what you eat (and, optionally, the calories you consume) by direct-messaging through Twitter. I’ve used other diet-recording software/sites such as www.sparkpeople.com, but this is SO much easier because with Twitter you’re always logged in. An online calorie lookup service (www.acaloriecounter.com, www.thedailyplate.com, etc.) is convenient if you do use this.
You can also tweet your appointments to your calendar if you use www.rememberthemilk.com (RTM) – complete with a time for the appointment – by simply sending something like, “dental appointment @ may 5th 8:00PM” If you’ve set RTM up properly, this will the propagate to your Google calendar. I’ve even gone so far as to purchase a copy of Rainlendar which mixes my Outlook and multiple Google calendars together for one convenient desktop display.