Twitter, the micro-blogging/status web app, has been the subject of a lot of chatter lately on the ol’ Internets (and, by no coincidence, a top time-suck for me). Equally loved and reviled, Twitter lets you post a short, 140-character-or-less message informing the world of what you’re up to at that moment. Like most, I balked at the idea when Mr. Keith first introduced it to me back in November of Aught-Six.
I’ve long since warmed up to the concept and have posted nearly 3,000 largely nonsensical “tweets” in my time. It’s only been recently though that I’ve started to see the real power of the mass of information cycling through the service on a given day.
What if one could harness Twitter messages from the general populous based around a single topic or event? Enter Politweets, slapped together over a weekend or so by Doug, Gabe, Min, Dan, and myself. What Politweets is doing is observing Twitter for messages mentioning any of the Democrats or Republicans currently vying for their respective party’s nomination in the Presidential primaries.
We launched Politweets yesterday, focusing the launch date around the New Hampshire primaries. Clever, right? Anyway, the site gives you an absolute, up-to-the-second view of the political musings of the Twitterverse. I’ve frankly been astounded at some of the observations one can cram into 140 characters available. In addition to displaying lists of messages, we also keep track of the frequency candidates are mentioned (displayed in the center column of the main page).
Speaking for the rest of the crew, we’re all exceptionally proud of how this turned out. We’re far from done, though. We’re cooking up additional features that’ll help visitors drill down through the data and make some real sense out of the mash. It’s going to be good, rest assured.
Thus far we’ve gotten great reviews. A sampling of sites talking about Politweets:
- Politweets: Twittering Politics on ReadWriteWeb
- Politweets Tracks the Primaries. Why Didn’t Twitter Build This? on Mashable
- Politweets, a political buzz tracker based on Twitter on ZDNet
Heck, we even got a mention on Wired. Cool stuff.
The primaries are just heating up, so keep your eye on Politweets!