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In Search for a Twitter Application

To find a Twitter client that properly serves my Tweeting behaviours is actually not easy. This has been my problem for both my laptop and my mobile.

For my laptop, two most crucial criteria are:

  • Work on Ubuntu 9.10, and
  • Display Thai script properly.

I don’t care whether it is native Linux, on Adobe AIR, or a browser extension. However, these two criteria together rule out many decent Adobe AIR applications, including TweetDeck, Twhirl, and many others. TweetDeck shows only boxes, even with International Font selected. Twhirl displays the main characters, but the upper and lower vowels are missing, making it too difficult to comprehend.

Some AIR applications make it through these two criteria. Spaz, Ada, and Snitter are ones I have found. However, Snitter seems to have some problem with the display, making it quite messy. Spaz and Ada are quite good. I actually used Spaz for some time.

Apart from AIR application, another good Twitter client is Echofon for Firefox, formerly known as TwitterFox. TwitterFox was actually the client I used from the beginning. I used only TwitterFox until my Firefox 3.5 crashed regularly on Windows 7 RC, so I started to use AIR-based apps. I didn’t return to it even I came back to Linux because I was irritated by the fact that it couldn’t display more than 20 tweets. (This has been improved.)

Some may ask about native Linux apps. There are some, but they usually lack useful features. I tried them once, and they didn’t even have the (old-style) Retweet.

Right now I want to add another criterion. It’s not as crucial as the first two, but I really want it. It is:

  • support the new official Retweet function.

I actually really like the new Twitter’s own Retweet. However, none of the applications I have mentioned passed these three criteria together. Echofon displays new RT, but can’t use official RT from it.

Yesterday I finally found some applications that pass all these three. They are Google Chrome extensions.

I already had Google Chrome for Linux beta installed, so I tried installing the extensions. The installation worked well. However, when I tried to use it, Chrome just shut itself down. This happened to all three extensions I tried: Chrowety, Tweetings, and Twopup.

Today I installed Chrome from the developer channel instead of the official beta. The extensions actually work, and it quite impressive, but I have another problem. The web pages blinks. Very often. That substantially disturb my web browsing, and I just can’t work on it.

Published in lang:English My Life Technology


  1. – seem like that Thai is a main problem

    – is retweet function that important? (what is the diffence between new and official RT?)

    • Chayanin Chayanin

      – New and official RT are the same thing. They are opposed to the old manual RT.

      – The difference is that new RT is official and technical. It cannot be modified.

      – The old RT makes it very hard to trace back to the original tweet. There’s no link to the original tweet. It’s very hard to check.

      – New RT does not include the username in 140 characters. This was the problem of the old RT. If the original tweet contained almost 140 characters, the inclusion of the username would make it exceed 140 characters.

      – You can see easy what you retweet and which tweets of yours are retweeted.

      – You can turn the retweet off.

      – The mistake of retweeting the protected tweets is impossible with new RT.

  2. mk mk

    Chrome extensions are still not polished as Firefox’s. Time will change.

    At the moment, i think the best, still not perfect, is Gwibber, native one by Ars Technica’s Ryan Paul. The other option is Seesmic web. Light-weight but still don’t support native RT (I like it as well).

    The final solution, is mbpidgin by @somsak and @sugree. But you will be flooded.

    • Chayanin Chayanin

      Thanks for sharing!

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