Category Archives: twitter

Twitter Icons for Halloween or Helloween?

Whoa…I just noticed some slick Halloween icons float thru my twitter feed and chased down these tweets from J. Adam Moore:

Whoa, I just shat a bunch of halloween icons all over my twitter page.

I feel like

Twitter helloween icons

twitter icon - bat >o<
twitter icon - frankenstein [:-]-I-
twitter icon - witch <|:~(
twitter icon - mummy (|:|/)
twitter icon - skull 8-#
twitter icon - gravestone +-(
twitter icon - pumpkin `O
twitter icon - moon ( | )
twitter icon - cat ∑:*)
twitter icon - werewolf }:o{
twitter icon - vampire :-[
twitter icon - zombie X-/
twitter icon - spider ////Ö\\\\
twitter icon - ghost [TBD]

Slick! I want more twitter icons

UPDATE: It appears Hajime KOBAYASHI is involved somehow, as the Halloween twitter image table is hosted on his site. Get ’em while they’re hot, as they may not be around long.

UPDATE 10-31-08: I’ve found some additional icons, like twitter icon - ghost, although I don’t know the keystrokes. Comment here if you figure them out…

WANTED: New Kind of CMS and New Kind of Start Page

wantedI’m looking for a couple things that I’m surprised I cannot find, yet:

1) New kind of CMS, turning your site/blog into your single profile/lifestream/social graph instead of maintaining those concepts across Facebook, Twitter, Friendfeed or elsewhere. There are some lifestream plugins for WordPress and some one-off integrated design efforts, but this feels like something worthy of a new CMS from the ground up — the mix of profile and social graph requires rethinking refresh cycles, data location/sharing, and existing blog/page design concepts. Now that APIs are proliferating at a rapid rate, it’s possible to create the truly distributed social network — where we own/control the end-nodes. Any ideas who is closest to this?

2) New kind of Start Page, combining SearchMe‘s visual pageflows, in-pageflow navigation/scrolling and PageFlakes/GReader RSS organization. The result would be a Start Page for my top 10+ pages of daily consumption, allowing in-page navigation/reading and the aesthetics of coverflow. This may be possible with SearchMe’s stacks (still trying), but I’m curious if any other start page platforms are incorporating the coverflow design concepts. Ideas?

I think #1 is a bigger idea, but both would bring me value.

UPDATE: @quangt mentioned Chris Pirillo’s new WicketPixie design as coming closer to the SocialCMS I’m suggesting. I really like what Matt Brett pulled together for Chris, but the Social Me and Faves pages are a couple examples of why I think a new CMS structure is in order. There should be a way to incorporate blogging, profiles, and the social graph in a more elegant, inclusive way than just pages/tabs.

Amazon, Twitter and Operant Conditioning

twitter downtimeTwitter/FriendFeed updates announced Amazon.com was down for at least an hour this morning. It has since come up and down a few times. CNet, Mashable, TechCrunch and, thus TechMeme, eventually realized it too. It’s up for me now.

I have no idea what happened, but I know Amazon gets a surge of buzz/traffic when it returns. I’ve seen Twitter leverage this strategy masterfully, reaping the rewards of variable scheduling to maximize conditioned behavior.

Wikipedia’s description of operant conditioning has this to say about fixed and variable scheduling of stimulus:

“According to the laws of operant conditioning, any behavior that is consistently rewarded, every single time, will extinguish at a faster rate while intermittently reinforcing behavior leads to more stable rates of behavior that are relatively more resistant to extinction. Thus, in detection dogs, any correct behavior of indicating a “find,” must always be rewarded with a tug toy or a ball throw early on for initial acquisition of the behavior. Thereafter, fading procedures, in which the rate of reinforcement is “thinned” (not every response is reinforced) are introduced, switching the dog to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement, which is more resistant to instances of non-reinforcement.”

Image above from Reinforcement Schedules (VR line shows maximum impact from Variable ratio schedules)

Applying this to Twitter’s intermittent downtime and you can see how Twitter awareness is reinforced every time Twitter comes back from an outage. Services like Twitter need people addicted and, ironically, random outages can help drive the addiction. Hopefully, Amazon’s lost sales make it too painful for them to follow a similar approach…

Sched.org: Order from Chaos at SXSW

Congrats to local AJAX cage-fighters Taylor McKnight and Chirag Mehta — for mashing together the hot site of SXSW 2008: Sched.org. Last year’s SXSW love child was Twitter, this year was Sched.

Sched’s simplicity and on-the-fly find/group scheduling picked up a couple thousand members during the conference — and coverage by Wired, TechCrunch, and Silicon Alley Insider along the way (see Techmeme). It didn’t hurt Sched buzz that the site was developed in only 14 hours (after some early McKnight prototyping).

Sched isn’t the first McKnight & Mehta joint — Chime.TV is another, delivering TV-like usability for net video. Taylor also helped create PodBop with Daniel Westermann-Clark. Keep ’em coming guys!

UPDATE: A mobile version is in such high demand that Michael Galpert even kicked off SponsorSched.org to get McKnight & Mehta an iPhone via this widget — I’ll toss some change in that hat:

Related images: taylor mcknight, chirag mehta, sxsw