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Twubble

October 11th, 2009 4 comments

Twubble is a useful Twitter application that helps users find people to follow based on their friend graph.  The site boasts the question “Looking for people to follow?” and then invites you to put in your twitter user name anTwubbled password so that it can poll though the list of people that you follow.  Twubble’s webpage says it “can help expand your Twitter bubble—it searches your friend graph and picks out people who you may like to follow.”  The application accesses who the people you follow are following.  If two or more of the people you follow are following the same person than it suggests that you follow them as well.  The site includes a global filter that pushes people who are followed by large numbers globally further down the list so that you can see who is popular with your friends locally.  The site then suggests a maximum of 100 followers.

When exploring Twubble I was reminded of Facebook’s Suggested Friends application.  HTwubble 2owever you cannot search though groups with Twubble the way you can with Facebook.  Twubble is useful for avoiding searching manually though Twitter for specific individuals.  It would probably also be helpful for someone who has just created a Twitter account or someone who wants to increase the sphere of people that they communicate with.

The creator of this site is Bob Lee, also known as Crazy Bob, a distinguished software engineer for Google.  Lee states in an interview that “If you use Twitter, Twubble can look at your existing friends’ friends and recommend new people for you to follow. It’s a stupid simple idea, but I think the execution and fun factor have won people over… I used the latest Google Web Toolkit milestone which supports Java 5. I was writing Javascript code (server and client side) for years before I ever got into Java, but I have to say, you’d be crazy to write AJAX apps any other way than GWT nowadays.” In the future Lee would like to add the ability to chose the friends that you want to look at instead of automatically using your thirty most updated contacts which probably include massive twitter accounts like CNN Breaking News, Ashton Kutcher, and Barack Obama who’s followers are in the millions and probably do not have a lot in common with you.

While the application is great for helping you find people you have interests in common with anTwubble 3d making your twitter experience more effective the site itself seemed to have some trouble working on both my laptop and the desktop computer I attempted to use it on.  The message “Twitter is taking longer than expected. If it doesn’t respond soon, refresh and try again” was offered and I am aware that this is a common issue with Twitter’s setup.  After a few tries it worked fine.  Also, it cannot tell if you are already following someone so if you try the application more than once it will offer you people that you already interact with on Twitter.  Overall this is a fun application and I would recommend it to anyone looking to expand their social network and enhance their Twitter experience.