I’m a big fan of apps that lets me navigate through all of the noise on Twitter in different ways. Even though I try not to follow too many people, since I know that I can’t keep up with too many at once, I still miss out on a lot of interesting happenings.
The official Twitter apps do have a feature that shows you local tweets, but it’s just a small feature and isn’t too fun to use. Since the service lets you tag all of your updates with location, that data is perfect to find new people and to know what’s going on in your neighborhood.
A new iOS and Android app by Seattle-based 47 Degrees called Streamd.in cuts through all of the Twitter noise to show you exactly what people are saying in your area. When you fire up the app, it’s like you’re using Twitter for the first time.
Since I’ve been using Twitter for about six years, it’s easy to fall into the same trap of scanning over a never-ending feed of status updates, or quickly checking the trending topics. Hopping back and forth between those tasks all day gets kind of boring, but I’m finding that Streamd.in livens things up for me.
The app is basically a map with local tweets plotted on it. By seeing the areas with the most tweets, you can see what areas on a map are hot-spots, especially if you live in a popular city like San Francisco. I’ve just moved out of the city to San Mateo, so I’m still getting used to my surroundings and Streamd.in can help me with that.
Since I don’t know any of these people, I’m finding it interesting how “locals” are using Twitter. The list of people I follow are mostly those that I know or have similar interests to me. Needless to say, my Twitter-life is a very sheltered one.
By using Streamd.in to interact with Twitter, I’m closing myself off to a smaller network of people who are mostly tweeting about their surroundings, which are familiar to me since I now live here. Basically, the service has carved out a whole new network of people for me and I dig it.
You can tweet from the service of course, which automatically tags your location with each update:
Unfortunately, for this new way to use Twitter to catch on, the other people in your area would also have to use an app like this, or be paying attention to local tweets using the official Twitter apps. While this is unlikely, I can see something like this catching on, albeit slowly, and Streamd.in is a perfect way to get started.