Over the last few months I've started exploring twitter. It seemed like a fad. I signed up and said... Now what this is lame.
Having used it a little longer I'm starting to see some value. Not as a site for expressing 'what I'm doing' but as a modern megaphone. A way to shout something for anyone willing to listen. Of course not everyone can be bothered to listen to what you have to say especially if you're busy telling people about the boring minutia of your life. Don't be that guy, rookie mistake.
Twitter can be best explained by thinking about communication tools:
- Telephone - one to one synchronous (balanced)
- IM - one to one async (balanced)
- Blog - one to many async (un-balanced)
- Twitter - one to many (balanced)
For this reason twitter is often called a micro-blog. The issue for writing an actual blog is that it takes time. Writing an article can take anywhere from 10min to several hours. Some posts may peculate over months. Compare that to twitter where your writing is constrained to 140 characters. This means that anyone with 2 minutes can write a mini-blog post and get their ideas, questions or opinions across.
Instead of this long blog post I could have just written:
Twitter - strange service, somewhat useful. Forces ideas to be clean, simple and direct. Limited space makes people think before they write.
Exactly 140. Not bad. Add a comment and I'll follow you. - @graiz