The longest tweet of all time – 247 characters


Taylor Buley, a writer for Forbes, has broken the Twitter world record. His tweet about Benjamin Franklin’s maxim about the inevitability of taxes was a humongous 247 characters long.

I wrote humongous to add a bit of oomph to the opening paragraph – I think it worked.

He used Twitter’s API for the feat. It allows for 247 characters. It cuts the message at 136 characters and uses the remaining four for a space and ellipses. An ellipsis is three dots in case you didn’t know. I knew, of course. I didn’t have to ask anyone. The 140 character tweet is what is displayed in the Twitter stream.

The ellipsis is hyperlinked, however. When clicked it displays the full message in all of its Twitter rule-breaking glory.

It’s not clear if it’s a bug or a feature as of yet. What is known is that Taylor Buley is a record breaker. He wanted to be the best, he wanted to beat the rest. He had the dedication. Norris McWhirter and Roy Castle will be looking down and smiling.

(via Forbes)

Twitter bring search to its pages


Twitter has added a proper search bar to its pages now so that you, me and everyone we know can perform real-time searches as to what people are talking about. The move might actually give people a reason to go back to the main site whose overwhelming traffic goes only to the Twitter API with programs like twhirl and twibble and all other things generally with blue icons and beginning with tw.

The trouble is that are a plenty of services out there that already provide a real-time search of Twitter, so will it make any difference that the mother site has now got its act together?

If you can’t think of anything to search Twitter for, then the sidebar will display the most popular terms that people are talking about at the moment with Swine Flu and Wolverine on top at the moment. Not sure which of those I’d rather sit through.

(via Twitter blog)

Spotify API "not much use to anyone", say developers

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Developers aren’t too impressed with the much-trumpeted release of Spotify’s API. The blog post announcing the availability of the API, and the news article on Slashdot on the subject, are both peppered with comments about how limited the API actually is.

In fact, right now there’s only one thing you can do with it. Make a Spotify program that’ll let Premium subscribers listen on IA-32 Linux. That’s it. No websites, no mobile clients, no set-top boxes, or games consoles. Nothing. Certainly no making money off your application, even though you have to pay for a premium account to get an application key in the first place.

Now, to be fair to Spotify, they’ve said that they’ll expand things over time as they get used to running an API. But in its current state, the API is pretty much useless to 99.9% of people who want to do something with it. That’s a shame.

Libspotify (via Pansentient)

Spotify launching API

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This is the big news that followers of Spotify have been waiting for for a little while. The revolutionary music service is launching an API “sometime this week”. It’ll give developers access to the raw workings behind the software, including its streaming facilities.

I don’t need to tell you that this is *fantastic* news. Freeing up the vast catalogue that Spotify has built up will energize developers and you’re going to suddenly see the service appearing everywhere – from phones to set-top-boxes and games consoles, but also on the web. The mobile aspect will be most interesting – anyone will be able to build their own mobile client for the service for any platform – BlackBerry, Symbian, iPhone, Android – whatever.

Also revealed by Spotify – 40,000 new users sign up each day, and users are spending on average 70 minutes listening to the service every day! That’s three lots of ads served to every user every day. Not bad!

When the API is out, we’ll scan the nascent developers scene and bring you the best of the user-built applications.

(via Guardian)

Guardian opens its content to the world, launches API


The Guardian, a British newspaper, has today launched the Guardian Open Platform. “What’s that?”, you may ask. It’s an open API for all the Guardian’s web content. More simply, it’s a way for anyone to freely use Guardian content and data for whatever they want.

You may be wondering why on earth the paper would give its content away for free, given that it charges for it in paper form. Well, the answer is that the Guardian wants to be an all-pervasive source of knowledge on the web, rather than just a site that people have to go to to get that content.

Using the new system, anyone will be able to integrate Guardian data into web applications. The Guardian, in return, gets ad revenues. For the moment, it’s limited to just 5000 queries a day, and it’s all still in beta, but with any luck the Guardian can use their strong trusted position to become the default content provider for many sites on the net.

Guardian Open Platform (via TechCrunch)