I've been a Twitter addict for about 18 months now, and I'd like to think I know the majority of what there is to know about how it works and what you can do with it. But after reading Twitter Tips, Tricks, and Tweets by Paul McFedries, I realize that you *can* teach an old dog new tricks. I picked up a number of nuggets here that have worked their way into my Twitter consciousness, making the experience even more enjoyable.
Contents: How Do I Get Started with Twitter?; What Can I Do to Customize My Twitter Profile?; How Do I Send Twitter Updates?; How Do I Follow Other Twitter Users?; Can I Use Twitter on My Mobile Phone?; How Do I Find Stuff in Twitter?; Where Can I Display My Twitter Feed?; How Can I Take Twitter to the Next Level?; What Tools Can I Use to Extend Twitter?; Glossary; Index
As you might expect with a book like this, it's primarily geared to the person who either has never used Twitter or who has signed up for a Twitter account but never tried it. And for that, the book is perfect. McFedries writes in a simple, conversational mode that appeals to someone who is unfamiliar with the technology. Combine that with an abundance of pictures and illustrations, and I could give this to my dad as a starter guide, and he'd get it. Even given that Twitter is an online tool that can change at any time, the information layout is such that it should age relatively well. He focuses on concepts as well as details, and information about Twitter etiquette and how to effectively retweet don't ever go out of style.
For those of us who *have* been using Twitter for awhile, there is still some value here. The last two chapters reference a number of third-party sites that allow Twitter to be used in non-conventional ways (compared to just straight tweeting). Using Twittercal to update your Google Calendar has some useful implications. Even better is the LinkedIn Company Buzz widget that tracks tweets that mention the company (or companies) that you work(ed) for. I'm a firm believer in keeping a finger on the pulse of what's being said about your company, and Twitter is a great way to do that in real-time. Had it not been for this book, I might not have discovered that cool feature.
Granted, the more time that passes between the publication date and the time you read the book, the more chance there is that some of the information might become dated or just flat-out incorrect. And yes, the geeks among us might argue that you can find all this information via web sites or researching it on your own. But not all (potential) Twitter users are geeks, and Twitter Tips, Tricks, and Tweets is a great way to open up the door to allow those people the chance to get up to speed quickly. And even the geeks might learn a thing or two they didn't know before...
Disclosure: Obtained From: Amazon Vine Review Program Payment: Free
I wanted this book to convert me to a twitterati, and it didn't. By the time I got around to writing the review, a new edition is available, and maybe that one would be more persuasive. Suspect that if you tweet, you don't need the book, and if you don't get Twitter, a book's not going to help much.
Thomas Duff, aka "Duffbert", is a long-time member of the Lotus community. He's primarily focused on the development side of the Notes/Domino environment, currently working for a large insurance … more
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‘…a complete guide to the tweets, apps and tricks involved in belonging to one of the world's fastest-growing communities.' (Management Today, July 2010).--This text refers to an alternatePaperbackedition.