Blogging was where we began, and how we built our company so we have preserved this archive to show how our thinking developed over a decade of developing the use of social technology inside organisations

The Twittering Bridge

by Tim Duckett

Twitter has become something of a phenomenon – if you’re not familiar with it, it’s a cross between blogging and instant messaging, with a dash of SMS thrown in. You’ve got 140 characters to say what you’re doing right now, and you can build up social connections by “following” and being “followed” by other Twitter users
One of the cleverest moves on the part of the developers was to open up the API, so that anyone with a bright idea can use the service to mash up for uses that would perhaps never considered otherwise. Everything from news headlines to whether your pot plants need watering, in fact
Tom and Tom have now taken this one stage further. Our offices are just around the corner from Tower Bridge, which clearly got them thinking – and then coding. So now Twitter users can follow Tower Bridge, which will tweet 5 minutes before it’s due to lift, and then again five minutes later to tell you that it’s closed again
Trivial? Certainly. Pointless? Maybe. But a good illustration of how services can be put to uses unimagined by their original developers – and an example of the power of APIs? Definitely.

3 Responses to The Twittering Bridge

  1. By Tom Armitage on February 28, 2008 at 12:21 pm

    I’ve now written up the endeavour on my blog, if you’re interested.

  2. By Nicola Mattina on February 29, 2008 at 8:53 am

    Interesting: it could be more if it were possible to add sensors to the bridge and gather other information like cars passing, people visiting and so on. Or something more creative: messages sent when a certain number of people do something…
    It could be a funny experiment for tourism promotion: many places have monuments and places with a personality: twitter can allow them talk 🙂

  3. By Antonio Gould on March 12, 2008 at 11:53 am

    What a great idea! Just saw a thing about a Twittering plant too which reminded me of this
    I’ve been reading about spimes too – there are some obvious connections here which make this idea quite exciting. Lots to explore!