Category: Twitter

Tastymate adds an extra ingredient to restaurant reviews

Whether it’s true or not, folks in Portland like to claim that we’ve got more restaurants and bars per capita than any city in the United States. And that has a lot of folks thinking about the ranking and reviewing of those restaurants and bars.

I mean, we have a ton of restaurants. But they’re not all good.

Enter tastymate, a new restaurant review tool, which has quietly launched a BETA of its service.

A Ruby-on-Rails side-project for Graeme Nelson, tastymate was designed to be simple, straightforward, and quick, with a simple premise:

I created tastymate because I wanted a better way to find and share tasty restaurants and bars. I wanted to be able to find tasty spots through my friends and their friends.

“Voting” is based on how many people have added the restaurant or bar to their personal lists of “tasty spots.”

So, it’s another restaurant-review site, you say. What’s the extra ingredient?

The little extra ingredient that makes tastymate interesting—besides its inherent simplicity—is tastymate’s Twitter integration.

Follow tastymate on Twitter and you’ll receive notifications when new folks join or when restaurants are added.

If you have Twitter on all-day, it provides a pretty compelling way to answer the “where should I go to eat?” question when you have recommendations flowing in via your Twitter stream. Especially as the user base continues to grow.

For more information or to register for an account, visit tastymate.

Pulse of Portland begins beating

The Portland-area Twitter hits just keep on coming.

In the “links arrangement” below, I highlighted a post that Scott Kveton published yesterday, where he mentioned an idea for following what Portland was talking about on Twitter. Today, Josh Bancroft made it a reality.

Pulse of PDX has launched.

How does it work? Anyone from Portland who is followed by @pulseofpdx on Twitter (and following @pulseofpdx is the easiest way to be added) will be added to a stream of comments that are published to the Pulse of PDX site.

So, if you’re not using Twitter (For shame! Here’s how you get started), you’re still dipping your toe in the Twitter water, or you’re not really interested in following all of Portland and Vancouver, try checking out Pulse of PDX and listen in on the talk of the town, today.

Portland a-Twitter, an editorial opinion

While I’m not one of the old guard in terms of Twitter usage (I’m somewhere around user 1,340,521), I am a big fan of the service.

Twitter, in fact, was one of the motivating factors for starting the Silicon Florist in the first place. Because, via Twitter, I was hearing about a bunch of cool things happening in the Silicon Forest. But I wasn’t seeing anyone covering them for a wider audience.

And, hence, the seed was planted.

So, why do you care? Well, turns out that there is a very vibrant Twitter community here in Portland. I’m following more than 500 folks in the Silicon Forest on Twitter, as we speak. And it’s a great resource for staying in tune with what’s happening around here.

Now, that type of following isn’t for everyone. That’s for sure. But, nonetheless, I would encourage you to give Twitter a shot, if only to pitch me story ideas.

Getting started is easy.

  1. Register for an account at Twitter
  2. Type something in the “What are you doing?” box

Congrats! You’re on Twitter!

Now, let’s move on to some “advanced use.” Start following some people and getting into the conversation. Right off the bat, I would recommend a few of my Portland favorites Marshall Kirkpatrick, Josh Bancroft, Scott Kveton, Jason Grigsby, Raven Zachary, Aaron Hockley, Betsy Richter, Peat Bakke, Jake Kuramoto, Jason Harris, Katherine Gray, Josh Pyles, Audrey Eschright, Ignite Portland, Portland on Fire, and… honestly I could go on and on. (“And I love each and every single one of the folks I follow equally, for they are all special in their own right,” he said, hoping to deflect complaints for those he might have inadvertently missed.)

How do you follow people?

  1. Log into your shiny new Twitter account
  2. Click on the folks’ links above
  3. Click the big “Follow” button underneath each person’s picture

Voila!

You can even follow me and the Silicon Florist, if you like.

I know, I hear you. “How do I find more Portland people?” You are on the fast track, my friend. Bravo! (Or Brava! as the case may be.) There are a number of ways to find more Portland folks:

Oh, and last, but certainly not least: It’s polite etiquette to follow those who are following you on Twitter. So, if you follow me, I’ll follow you. And I encourage you to follow suit. One-way conversations are no fun.

So why the big Twitter push from the Silicon Florist?

It’s purely mercenary, I assure you.

I’m convinced that, for all the cool stuff I hear about from my current Twitter brood, there are ten times more Silicon Forest startup stories happening. I want to hear about them. And Twitter is a good way for me to stay in touch. Nuff said.

I’m looking forward to seeing you on Twitter.

I Want Sandy on Twitter

That’s a statement. Not a demand.

I Want Sandy, the anthropomorphic digital assistant (whom I always cover so I have the opportunity to use the word “anthropomorphic”) from Portland-based Values of n, has expanded her available inbound communications repertoire, as it were. She is now available to take your messages and requests as @s on Twitter.

Add her as a friend. She’ll add you. And the tweets will be flying in no time.

Sandy regularly polls Twitter asking for any new direct private messages meant for her eyes only. Each message you twitter is associated with your Twitter user name and account which Sandy checks against the Twitter user name she has on file for your iwantsandy.com account.

For more, see the I Want Sandy Twitter FAQ. Or see Rael Dornfest’s comment on the newest Twitter-based I Want Sandy features.

TwitterWhere releases BETA Adobe AIR application

Announced just days ago, Portland-based Matt King’s TwitterWhere has been a runaway hit with the Twitter crowd, to say the least.

Rolling with momentum, King has released an Adobe AIR-based version of the tool. The BETA version is currently searching tweets within 20 miles of Portland, Oregon, USA.

Download the BETA TwitterWhere application and try it out. (Note: This will begin downloading a file.)

To reach or add Matt King on Twitter, use @mattking.

TwitterWhere: Get tweets by geographic location

It’s Twitter geography day, today, on Silicon Florist. First, my post on Portland Twitter types. Now, something even cooler.

Portland-based interactive developer Matt King has announced the release of TwitterWhere, a tool for listening to Twitter users in your backyard. Or up to 50 miles away from your backyard. Or in someone else’s backyard. Or… Well, you get the picture.

At first blush, TwitterWhere is exactly the type of tool for which people like me—who are looking to keep tabs on the local scene—have been waiting. (In fact, it could easily make me obsolete.)

TwitterWhere lets you generate an RSS or XML Feed to filter out Tweets around a certain area. Just enter a city, state, postal code, choose the range of miles you want to include, and hit the button. You’ll instantly get URLs to add to your RSS reader.

I just grabbed the Portland feed and it appears to be pulling those more hip airport-call-sign-oriented types using PDX, as well.

This looks very promising.

For more coverage of TwitterWhere, see Read/Write Web and Mashable.

Twitter on Portland, Portland on Twitter

It’s no secret that Twitter tends to be my newswire. And I’m not the only one. Portland’s own Marshall Kirkpatrick of Read/Write Web goes so far as to say, “Twitter is paying my rent.”

To me and many others, Twitter is the AP wire. It’s where I hear about stuff first.

In fact, Twitter is part of the reason I started Silicon Florist. Because I just saw so much happening out there in our fair city.

For the uninitiated and perhaps intimidated, it is important to note that the beauty of Twitter is its clean and nearly foolproof opt-in setup. Getting spam? Quit following. Done. Want to know who’s following your news? Just look. There they are.

Doesn’t get much cleaner than that.

So, I thought it might be helpful to highlight a by-no-means-exhaustive smattering of the Portland organizations and events that I am following on Twitter as a way to stay up-to-date with Rose City happenings. (For the complete list of whom I follow, visit Twitter.)

If I were you, I’d consider following the following Portland-area startups on Twitter:

And then, there are a number of Portland-area startups who have employees on Twitter. (Which, honestly, is almost better than a company on Twitter. In the same way that, by and large, employee blogs are far more interesting than corporate blogs.)

Some of those startups are:

Finally, it isn’t lost on me that I may not be following all the people, companies, and groups that I should be following.

So, I’m asking you to enlighten me.

If you want me (and other Silicon Florist readers) to follow your Silicon Forest startup on Twitter, please feel free to add your Twitter identity to the comments, below. (I’ve refrained from posting a list of individual Portlanders here. But if you want more people following you, feel free to add your Twitter account to the comments, as well.)

If the list gets long enough, I might have to work on publishing a Portland-centric “who to follow on Twitter” list.

Tweet! SplashCast announces Twitter integration, Columbia Records deal

SplashCast, the Portland-based media company that enables anyone to create a media channel out of practically anything they have lying around the house—video, music, photos, narration, text, as well as RSS feeds, PowerPoint presentations and PDF documents—has announced a groundbreaking new feature for their SplashCast player: integration of Twitter.

SplashCast, the Portland-based media company that enables anyone to create a media channel out of practically anything they have lying around the house—video, music, photos, narration, text, as well as RSS feeds, PowerPoint presentations and PDF documents—has announced a groundbreaking new feature for their SplashCast player: integration of Twitter.

SplashCast now offers the only media player online that allows quick, inline messaging to Twitter. Your viewers will be able to click the Twitter icon in your players, provide their username and login and then enter a message to be sent with a link to your channel to their entire network of friends on Twitter. Think Twitter’s just for the early adopter tech crowd? Readers of Sally Forth in the Sunday comics and viewers of the MTV Video Music Awards might disagree.

They also apparently signed a deal with some little record company called Columbia Records.

http://web.splashcast.net/Skins/candc_wide.swf

That deal carries with it two additional technology features that benefit all SplashCast users, but Columbia-act Coheed and Cambria will be the first to use the new features:

FanCast, our new mobile publishing feature, will allow the band’s fans to upload photos, audio files and video from their mobile phones to the Coheed and Cambria channel.

The second feature that will be deployed first on Columbia Records artist channels is live chat. Fans will be able to discuss whatever is on their minds in real time with our new in-player chat functionality.

I know, I know. I led with the technology.

I realize that the SplashCast deal with Columbia Records is huge. For both the company and the awareness of the SplashCast player. Not to mention Beyonce. And Bruce.

And, this is huge for Portland, as well. More and more the music mecca, this deal meshes incredibly well with the local culture.

All good points. And all worth congratulations. But I stick to my lead for three reasons:

  1. SplashCast is the first media delivery application to embrace the power of Twitter as part of its core feature set.
  2. This marks a decided move beyond simply “publishing” media to facilitating media distribution and promotion.
  3. I guessed this Twitter integration was coming.

Additional coverage of the SplashCast announcement can be found on the SplashCast blog, Center Networks, TechBizMedia, and Mashable.

Grabb.it releases microblogging feature

Portland-based Grabb.it has announced the release of a new microblogging feature for its users.

Following the lead of services like Twitter, Jaiku, and Pownce, the new Grabb.it feature allows users to post short messages (less than 140 characters) and provides a feed to which others can subscribe. An example can be found here.

The recent development efforts—like the iPhone interface—have led to a growth spurt for Grabb.it, forcing them to have deal with (welcome) growing pains.

Tweet: New SplashCast player in the works

Word around the campfire—if Twitter is a campfire—is that there is a new SplashCast player currently undergoing testing.

[UPDATE] More SplashCast folks twittering about testing, testing. This leads me to wonder if there is some Twitter hook in the new SplashCast player. Or at least the ability to “post this to Twitter.” Of course, they could just be testing, seeing as their posts are coming via Twitterific.

Stay tuned. I’ll be sure to post more news on the latest SplashCast release as it becomes available.

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