All you have to do is add an account to a private list (without following them) and then view the timeline for that list. I really only ever interact with Twitter through Tweetbot (tear today!) or Tweetdeck, so I have one list I call "The Group" that is a highly curated list of folks I actually want to see stuff from, and a few other lists of accounts that are intermittently interesting but that I don't need to actually follow.
Because following an account is akin to an endorsement or at least a weak association in a way, this method is also interesting when it would be useful to stay updated with an account without strictly associating it. (Some will immediately think of political accounts or counter-culture accounts; I actually use it when following companies that I might need to see news from like my utility but that I don't want to say "Hey spam me with your PR!")
Additionally, it's good to keep track of who switched sides on a particular topic or in general - occasionally, I'll find a viewpoint that doesn't "belong" to the list and figure out that the person has switched sides. It's interesting to track when that happened and why...
If only this would work for outbound stuff (likes/retweets); i.e. sorting my followers into dedicated lists A, B and C. When switching to C mode, my retweets and likes will rank low priority on lists A and B and high on list C.
(I use Reddit's multis for a similar purpose.)
At various times, I've written "graceful degredation/progressive enhancement"-friendly versions of work internal sites so people working on the floor could access them...from a scan gun running Windows mobile.
Was it pretty? Not really. Did it respond well to only having arrow keys and a numpad? I tried, and would like to day yes, but who can say? You can't optimize for the ux without previous experience as a user imho.
Edit: fix typos
The biggest WTF is you have to send a Bearer Token but the value isn't checked.
So many cool things you can discover with Charles
Why would Twitter even block anonymous users from read-accessing its platform? Whatever the reason might be, it's not beneficial to me, the spirit of open communication or society in general.
This is like a newspaper that only makes a special version just for you, and won't let you peak at what other people are seeing. I don't believe they have anything good in mind. With Twitter they can't have so much control over your communications but they certainly try their best.
For the record, bandwidth is not a problem. Even including the massive amount of spam (2,400 tweets/day/account are allowed) and over 300M tweets per day, the total size of a daily non-compressed archive would be under 80GB, probably closer to 40-50GB pre-compression and less after that. It could be distributed as a single torrent with virtually no cost to Twitter.
The window of human history where newspapers might be considered moderately open, even in the West, is quite small. Probably from about the beginning of America's transformation into a car country -- around 1930 or so was the first time most people could a) read, b) afford, and c) conveniently get a paper delivered to home.
And they were only probably truly "open" in the sense of not requiring any transaction to access them for the period between about 1996 (around when online newspapers came around) and let's say around 2010-2011 when the NYT implemented the first major metered paywall.
So openness is good and I support it, but also am skeptical of a view of history that the world was open until Twitter closed it.
But we are where we are, now. Given that Twitter is absolutely not going to do your daily tweet torrent idea (the Library of Congress stopped archiving Twitter after concluding the value in doing so was nil, and clearly the mechanism for open preservation of the social web would be through large, official cultural institutions and not Twitter exposing private functionality to you at their own expense), I think ultimately there are two questions to ask: 1) Are you willing to engage in some kind of membership transaction to access a service? 2) Given that the cost of membership is personal information, if this bothers you, what measures can you take to limit it?