On Twitterology and WordPressery

I have a Twitter account.

I barely use it. I always forget about it. Yes, I have crossposters to move content from my blog to Twitter by Tweeting a link back to my latest post. Yes, I have a widget for Opera that lets me access Twitter easily with a nice windowed interface.

I forget about it. It happens. *shrug*

I’m not sure how valuable Twitter is, to be honest. But it’s there.

What brings Twitter to mind is that I upgraded the WordPress plugin I use — WP To Twitter — this morning and crashed my blog for about three minutes. I’m not sure why the blog crashed, but it did. White screen of death, which suggests a function conflict somewhere. I deleted the files for the plugin off the server, went to WordPress Extend, downloaded the version of the plugin I’d upgraded from, and tried again. All was well with the world.

The one thing WP To Twitter didn’t do, however, was to provide a sidebar of Tweets. The blog theme I currently use, Brian Gardner’s Core theme, has a Twitter sidebar widget built in, but the functionality was limited. It couldn’t exclude Tweets, like the links back to my blog content.

Alex King’s Twitter Tools, however, does do that with its sidebar widget. And while it can push a Tweet with a link to my latest blog post, it can’t do what WP to Twitter does — it can’t let me write a custom Tweet for a post. Twitter Tools can attach a hashtag, but it won’t let me write a Tweet that is something other than the post title and link.

Thus, I’m thinking of using both plugins. Let WP to Twitter handle pushing Tweets to Twitter — post title and link if I want that, a custom string if I want that. Let Twitter Tools handle the importing of Tweets to my blog’s sidebar. It’s overkill to do that, I know, but to achieve what I want it looks like, for the nonce, that this is what I must do. :tired:

And, to completely baffle long-time Allynologists, this post was written in Firefox. Yeah, I know. Crazy, innit?

Published by Allyn

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.

3 thoughts on “On Twitterology and WordPressery

  1. I was experimenting with the border-radius CSS3 property.

    Opera 10.1 doesn’t support it. The Opera 10.5 Pre-Alpha does. And Firefox 3.5.x does.

    The WordPress admin screens use border-radius. I wanted to see how different that made things look between different browsers.

    I ended up disabling Twitter Tools, and I’m using the in-built code in the Core theme to put Tweets in my sidebar.

  2. I use an RSS plugin to bring my RSS feed over from twitter to the blog. No control over the content but see below…

    I also use the RSS2twitter web tool to take the RSSs from the blog and from my del.icio.us and feed them into twitter. With the blog, it automatically picks up post’s title and the ‘extract’ that I write in the wordpress interface with twitter in mind. With del.icio.us, it adds ‘bookmarked’ to the front of the link, and my description from del.icio.us. Any tweet linking to a blog post doesn’t last long anyway, so there’s no real feedback loop. RSS2Twitter also gives me clickthroughs, and has driven traffic up at the blog.

    Sometimes, Really Simple Syndication is the only tool a geek needs… 😉

    (And try twitter as another form of writing practice: you get very ruthless very quickly trying to work in 140 characters. Writers like Phil Pursar Hallard use it to write micro fiction (see @trapphic). And I’ve been able to almost abandon facebook, as I use a tool there to post any tweet with #fb to my status on facebook.)

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