> no average user wants that. Really, they don't. If you haven't seen Diaspora's Easy 25 Step Quick Start Guide, you should take a look. Is your mom going to do all that?
I really wish people would stop repeating this straw-man. XMPP is a federated, distributed system, and my mom can use it fine without setting up her own servers. Is it that hard to understand how the same thing would apply to status updates?
I'm surprised nobody in this thread has mentioned SMTP. It's even more widely used than XMPP, and it's a great example of a federated system (as well as the big issue one has to deal with with open, anonymous federated systems: abuse/spam).
Setting up a SMTP (or XMPP) server is not easy, but no "average user" is going to do that. They'll use their ISP, or Gmail, or their work e-mail.
the worst thing about it is that it maintains API compatibility with Twitter.
(I presume on Google Talk it's only commonly possible to speak to other people on Google Talk? I presume you could change the server config or set up your own XMPP servers, etc, but does anyone?)
There are even bridge transports to let jabber users talk to ICQ users and Facebook users. It's quite extensible. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jabber
It is not impossible. It really needs to be done. Oh, and Twitter will be the next AOL once something like this working well
I'm feeling the same disdain about committing to Twitter. I launched http://socialgrapple.com/ a few weeks ago--a social graph analytics product built on the Twitter API, and I'm pulling a bit of revenue already (a dozen paying customers). Now I have two choices: I have some wicked ideas of how to expand further on the Twitter API and provide even more value to customers who have expressed clear demand, or do I try and diversify onto other platforms to avoid getting bulldozed.
I know I can build a better and more valuable service with less effort by continuing to build on the Twitter platform. My developer instinct says "do it" but my business instinct says "forget the opportunity and diversify somehow." Diversifying is tricky because the graph mechanics on Facebook aren't the same, it seems the value of this intelligence is lower. Only other relevant market I can think of is something to do with SEO/web search terms vs domains.
I also know Twitter is building an internal analytics product, based various leaked screenshots, to complement their business model (tracking tweet impressions) but luckily it seems there's no overlap with what I'm building... yet.
I don't mean to hijack this thread but it seems relevant and I would love some feedback.
On a side note, I wrote a post in another thread that questions the details about the recent shift in Twitter's spirit towards developers:
What if before @replies, #hashtags, RT's (all invented by third parties), @Twitter said "don't make more clients"?
Going the multi-platform route is overrated in my opinion. You'll just become the lowest common denominator between the two. Either become your own platform, or really nail what you're doing on one.
Also, many congratulations on having a wife who sounds like a saint.
But it's great to see people doing more lengthy writeup for those willing to wok their way through them.
His blog is actually hosted by S3 but I'm sure he'll write a post on Jekyll stuff later.
To me "don't fill holes" says it all. Use Twitter data, but don't be a "Twitter company". If a one sentence description of your company includes the word Twitter, you're in the wrong business. There are many uses of the API that Twitter isn't going to touch. Is Twitter going to build a Zite like app (recently launched news/reader iPad app)? No. Is Twitter going to compete with StockTwits? Not a chance.
Ideas should center around a general need or want. Then see how Twitter, Instagram, other APIs can be used to leverage those ideas.
Weeks? That's pretty obnoxious.
The lack of feedback is pretty standard. Companies are scared stiff that they'll get sued for something they say, so they try to say as little as possible.
I had the same reaction about Chirp. I started to get the feeling from Twitter around the time of Chirp.
I was always wary of building apps that are completely dependent on someone else's platform to live and, indeed, my own startup was dealt a serious setback by the release of OpenVBX. So my fears were valid, after all.
My own Twitter usage has changed quite a bit lately, as well. I've given up on keeping up with what's going on. I check it less and less each day it seems. I had an idea this weekend about using small GroupMe groups to share ideas instead of Twitter because I could segment people better that way...
Anyway, It will be interesting to see what Twitter looks like in a few years...
This was a great post. Thanks for writing it.
Thanks for reading!