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twitter for developers

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"Twitter for developers", thoughts?

We're developers. We can clone a git repo, and deploy to heroku, aws, etc. Why can't we have an open source, single user, twitter like system, where status updates are hosted by each independent developer (as opposed to a centralized app like twitter or app.net)? To elaborate:

  • You'd clone a git repo, and deploy this app to your favorite web host.

  • There would be integration with twitter api's so that any status updates you post on your personally hosted timeline are also posted to twitter.

  • Twitter API rate limits wouldn't be a problem, because you are technically the only user of the app.

  • You would also get all of your twitter timeline, just through your personally hosted app (this will ease migration away from twitter)

  • If you want to follow someone, you just enter the uri to their stream and you'll start getting their timeline updates (no need to follow them on twitter...you can of course still do this).

Key benefits:

  • We won't be starting from scratch, status updates and timelines will still be on twitter. But eventually, a community will build up that's our community.

  • Barrier to entry is small for developers. You clone a git repo, and push to a free heroku instance.

  • free for the little guy... if you get 20k followers, you may want to buy web workers on heroku. But this a good problem to have, because: you own your brand, and can profit from that brand. not twitter.

  • You own your data. not twitter.

  • No single point of failure for status updates.

  • This new distributed client can evolve past what twitter provides. And it'll be driven by what we want, through contributions to the central repo.

I've already started work on it: https://github.com/amirrajan/sortis/blob/master/README.md

I think it's a neat idea...and that it's worth pursuing, you should run with it!

I thought about it a bit more... does it provide enough value over Twitter? Maybe, maybe not. I do like the idea of ownership of tweets and timelines though, so that'd be nice. But, I'm not sure that's enough to compel people to not use Twitter. But then again, people do pay for App.net and I would have never of guessed that.

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