(note: Since publishing this post, I have put a wiki together that goes into more depth about Tweetdeck)
As Jim and I started discussing this 13 More Things class way back in January, the first thing we added was Twitter. Now after viewing the Twitter resources and setting up your account, you are probably wondering “What were they thinking? Why is everyone so wound up about this really stupid thing.” Trust me, I was in the same place a few months ago. Now it is the most important part of my personal professional development. So what do I see in Twitter that you don’t? Let me see if I can explain it.
I tweet so that I can:
- establish relationships with like minded educators locally, nationally, and globally
- learn new things both professionally and personally
- stay up to date with with world and local events
- stay involved politically
- make new friends
- get tech support
- have a good laugh
- help others
Wow, that’s a quite a list. This isn’t what Twitter was designed for. It was designed to let people keep up with friends and family. However, the early adopters of this technology leveraged this medium to meet their needs. They changed twitter and made it a valuable resource for educators worldwide.
Let me show you how I use Twitter
How do I do all this? I do not use the web interface. There is no way to accomplish all of my goals with that interface. I use Tweetdeck, an a free Adobe Air application. You can download it from http://tweetdeck.com. (All of the screenshots that follow are of my Tweetdeck.) Tweetdeck allows you to make as many groups as you would like. (Also all you need to do is click on a person’s avatar and there are buttons for @replying, retweeting, and many other options. This make Tweetdeck easy to use. You can link your Facebook account too.) (The following screenshot is a composite.)
Needless to say, but I get a lot more out of Twitter when I can group my responses. Here’s some more of my groups.
Just so you get a better idea, here are a very few of the conversations that crossed my screen on 7/21.
You may have noticed some strange notations in the tweets so what follows is a marked up column that shows hashtags and a has a few comments about some of the tweets. Hopefully you’ll be able to see the kind of content I gain daily form twitter.
I also mentioned that I made a few friends. Here are some of them.
My last set of screen shots were taken while I was writing this post. I may be techie, but I do stupid things at times, like closing all of the toolbars and navigation bars in FireFox. So I turned to my Twitter Network for help.
Very quickly I heard from @irasocol
Meanwhile, others, some I didn’t know responded:
Eventually I figured it out with their help and sent a thank you tweet. If you look at the timestamps, This entire conversation took place and I fixed the problem in less than 30 minutes. Regular tech support would have taken a lot longer. The greatest thing about Twitter is that these conversations occur in real time. You can ask a question and will probably get a response.
There is a real live education community on Twitter and I encourage you to dive in. The people are friendly and very helpful. Enjoy.
PS. If you noticed the green borders or overlays on some of the avatars, that is to protest the Iranian Election debacle.
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