A Long Awaited Update

Glenn CrownoverMarch 9, 2013
I decided to break this into two posts - one for this update, and one explaining the "bigger picture" - where we are wanting to take this site.

We've been away from t4bp for quite some time and haven't paid much attention to this project. But after finishing some other projects (including looseleaves and stegomatic ), I decided it was time to revisit this site, and more importantly, revisit this concept.

Firstly, we did some simple upgrades:

  • Upgraded to API 1.1 - which just means the site will keep working with Twitter. This is partly what forced us to release this upgrade now.
  • We have added search functionality - finally. Just click the magnifying glass icon and enter your search term. The results will be displayed - t4bp style - and will be updated as new tweets come in that match your search.
  • We fixed the links issue caused by the move to t.co domains. Now all the quick-look features are back, such as flickr images, youtube videos, and bit.ly click counts - with many more on the way.
  • Other little enhancements and cosmetic fixes.

Our Experiment

But the BIG change - is in how tweets flow in and out the t4bp workspace.

Previously, as new tweets arrived, they would be held in a kind of arrival buffer, and a number would appear indicating how many tweets were waiting.  You then clicked this number to bring them into the workspace so you could view them.  They never left the workspace, unless you refreshed your screen or logged out.

This worked out ok - but required extra clicking to get new tweets.  It also didn't lend itself well to visually monitoring new arrivals on a t4bp screen while working on another screen.  You always had to click the red badge to see who was tweeting.

New Handling of Incoming tweets

Now, tweets are pulled into your workspace immediately - there is no holding buffer. Other tweets move over to make way for the new tweets (or tweeters are repositioned so first is always most recent).

Read / Unread Distinction

We now track what we believe you have "read" and not read. We then (optionally) hide the items that you have read, to keep the screen clear of distraction, and let you focus on what you have not yet seen.

Notice the checkbox on the upper right side - if checked, as you read tweets, they will be removed from the workspace. You can always bring them back instantly by unchecking this same checkbox. This also displays the total number of tweets and the number of unread tweets in your workspace.
Note: For fast switching, hit the r key to toggle the unread only mode. And to instantly mark all tweets as read , press c (for c atch up).

I invite you all to try this new style of t4bp and let me know (in the comments below, or some other way if you prefer) how it works for you. We will keep working towards our goal - see this post for our thoughts in this regard.
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Comments
broadwayandme
March 21, 2013
The site no longer works for me at all.  None of feeds I follow show up on the page regardless of how many times I sign in.  A big disappointment to me because I've loved this service up until now.
bluejava
March 22, 2013
Oh no!  Sorry to hear that broadwayandme !  I haven't heard reports from others of it not working, so perhaps it is something related to the state of your browser or something. What browser and OS did you experience this with?  

It might also be a "bad cookie" that is holding on to an old login session that has expired.  You could try clearing your cookies (just those for t4bp.com would be fine).

I am very dedicated to getting you back in working order again, especially since you enjoyed the service (and we are trying to keep making it better!)
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