Twitter Developer Tips From the Guy Who Wrote the Book

Adam DuVander
Aug. 05 2009, 03:45AM EDT

There's no doubt that Twitter mashups are very popular. Programmable Web listed 120 in February, 200 in June and 238 Twitter mashups today.

And one of the key reasons it is so popular is because of the number places where developers can hook in, according to Kevin Makice, who wrote the Twitter API book (aka @the_api_book). The book covers nearly everything a Twitter developer, beginner or advanced, needs to know.

Twitter interaction cycle

Of course, not all apps are equal. In a new presentation about the "Twitter ecosystem," Makice outlined five rules for a good Twitter application:

  • Be Secure - Use OAuth to sign users into Twitter (if necessary). No more asking for passwords means no more passwords stolen by shady app-makers.
  • Know Your Impact - You are not a typical user. Learn what your users do on Twitter. For example, Twitter users tend to have very small networks, which differs from many developers
  • Share - If you are creating data from your use of Twitter's API, create an API of your own. Hear, hear!
  • Iterate - Keep working on your product and be willing to let it change (just as Twitter user behavior changes).
  • Ask and Answer - Be a part of the community. Learn from and help other Twitter developers.

The entire talk is worth a view on SlideShare, where Makice also recorded audio. (You can also find the presentation embedded below).

Adam DuVander -- Adam heads developer relations at Orchestrate, a database-as-a-service company. He's spent many years analyzing APIs and developer tools. Previously he worked at SendGrid, edited ProgrammableWeb and wrote for Wired and Webmonkey. Adam is also the author of mapping API cookbook Map Scripting 101.

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