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Lotus Notes: The Best Twitter Client Ever?

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External ImageVia Steve McDonough I have discovered a very well-designed little Notes application created by Thomas Adrian which for lack of a better name I'll call Twitter.nsf. There are several reasons I have up to now found Twitter only marginally useful, including:

- The inability to distinguish read/unread tweets
- The inability to search within your own twitter stream
- The inability to group or categorize tweets beyond "favorite"
- The inability to view tweet threads easily
- The inability to prioritize the people you follow so your favorite twitterers get greater visibility. In this case, you might want to follow someone so you can see any direct messages or replies from them, but otherwise you are less interested in following everything they tweet.
- The inability to see all your followers or followees in a single, easily searchable view.

Although not all the above capabilities are currently available in Twitter.nsf, many are and the rest should be easy to add considering Notes' capabilities. Other nice features that play into Notes strengths include:

- The ability to easily take additional action on a given tweet (or several at once), e.g. copy into a calendar entry or forward via email.
- The ability to let multiple users access the same twitter stream without sharing that login
- The ability to monitor multiple twitter accounts at once (though I guess you could with multiple browser windows)
- The ability to trigger alerts based on different criteria. You might want to notify different people about different events, or trigger alerts based the frequency of specific keywords over a period of time.
- The ability to automatically generate tweets from outside sources, such as an incoming email, application error alerts, or user-triggered actions inside custom applications.

If it hasn't already occurred to you, keep in mind that this sort of application has tremendous potential as a corporate data-mining tool. You could for example have a Twitter.nsf set up to monitor multiple twitter account streams, or multiple application instances each tied to a specific issue area that a specific division or project team (e.g. corporate communications) wants to monitor. What are people saying about your products, your company, your competition?

I can think of no better, more extensible, or more flexible tool than Notes for helping Twitter become a truly useful tool, both for personal and business purposes. Throw an XPage interface on this baby and you could even sell these capabilities as a Twitter tie-in service to the masses. This is going to get interesting.

Excellent work, Thomas!

Comments

1 - Wow...Thanks for drawing my attention to the Twitter gadget.

I can't honestly see a corporate use for it but I'm glad to be able to add more social facilities to Notes anyway.

2 - @1 Gavin, to the extent that an organization makes or does something that the twitterverse might feel compelled to comment about, it should be easy to see the value in monitoring that comment stream.

While this tool doesn't appear yet to have the ability to monitor "non-followed" twitter streams (i.e. to leverage Twitter's search feature), it does at least make it easier to capture, sort, search through, and categorize the streams it does follow. Someone would have to keep expanding that list manually but that isn't difficult.


3 - Yep this little client Rocks! Thanks Thomas! :)

4 - Great post! And anything that makes managing tweets more... manageable... is incredibly useful for anyone looking to invest time in Twitter for business purposes.

5 - Hi Kevin, thank you for the posting the tool is very cool. I was wondering if you could help answering two questions:
1) I enabled the 'twitter update' agent to run on local and I tried to enable background local agents (not sure if the setting you are referring to is the one available from File --> Preferences but that is what i enabled) - the result is that I am able to retrieve the tweets even though I still get the "No RESUME" error message. Any idea?

2) I noticed that if I post a new tweet from the database, it doesn't display in the main view but I can see what i sent running the "Your Status" action. Also I noticed that once I run the 'twitter update' agent some older tweets i had posted under my twitter ID are downloaded to the database but not the last one (most recent one) I created from the database (that is posted on the twitter website). Again any idea would be appreciated.

Thank you

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