Twitter is a way to update your status or "micro blog" on a subject in 140 characters or less (basically the length of a SMS text message on a cell phone). Since 61 percent of the worlds population has a cell phone - the Twitter phenomena continues to explode through text messaging.
Once you join Twitter and get a username (mine is PatrickKaine), you'll want to start following people. When you follow someone and they send a tweet (the really gay way of saying they updated their status), you'll be able to see the message on your Twitter home page, on your cell phone as an SMS, through an RSS subscription, or any/all of these.
Keep up with things that are happening RIGHT NOW. I am following 69News (our local news station) and tonight they tweeted (I really hate writing that) about a severe thunderstorm approaching with hail and a funnel cloud. Lets say you are absolutely fascinated with Facebook and want to read everything about it. Do a Twitter search for Facebook and get real time results of people "talking" about it. Tip: I like going to Twitscoop and watching the rising trend key words to see what people are talking about right now.
Stay 'indirectly' connected. Lets say that a group of co-workers are working on a project or are just working together. I wouldn't send an email to Amy telling her that I'm stopping in on a client - but I might chose to use Twitter to update my status about this and all of those who follow me will be a little more "connected" knowing what I'm up to. When you do the same, we're staying connected - maybe even from hundreds of miles away from each other.
Connect with people who share similar interests. I recently contacted a co-worker through Twitter about how she was using her iPhone for work and if she was able to access SalesForce.com on it (the CRM program we use at my job). I end up getting an @reply from someone who saw my message and wanted to let me know that SalesForce now as a free lite version for the iPhone.
Posting mobile photos. Take a photo from your mobile phone and upload it to Twitpic. The subject line of the MMS will be your status update on Twitter with a link to the photo you just uploaded. Who could forget the US Airways crash in the Hudson? This photo was uploaded to Twitpic and Twitter in real time. This guy was in another plane crash and was Twittering his updates from the inside of the jet!
Here is some basic Twitter know how to help get you started.
- @username + message
- D username + message
- WHOIS username
- GET username
- NUDGE username
- FAV username
Example: @patrickkaine I love your blog!
Example: d patrickkaine want to pick me up some milk while you are at the there?
Example: whois patrickkaine
Example: get patrickkaine
Example: nudge patrickkaine
Example: fav patrickkaine
- STATS this command returns your number of followers, how many people you're following, and which words you're tracking.
- INVITE phone number
Example: Invite 415 555 1212