Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Apply search to following

There are still some things that don't make sense in search.twitter.com. For instance, it would be perfectly logical to search in just your followees' timelines. Why, TwitterSpy is already doing it. You could, of course, generate a huge query with "from:" and every possible person you're following, but search.twitter.com restricts the length of the query. Good luck if you have more than 10 friends. Uh, are there people like this after 1 month of using Twitter?

You could also write a console script, except that you don't want to type your password and reauthenticate once per follower. So doing it from the browser might be a better fit for a quick & dirty approach. This way your session would be reused.

Here's an educational bookmarklet. You can paste it in the URL bar of Firefox (didn't bother with other browsers) when you've opened twitter.com (won't work if window has a link open under another domain). And you can bookmark it- you thought it would be called a bookmarklet for nothing?

javascript:query = prompt("Twitter search:");
xmlhttp = new XMLHttpRequest();
xmlhttp.open("GET", "http://twitter.com/statuses/friends.json");
xmlhttp.onload=function (){
list=eval(xmlhttp.responseText);
for (i=0; i<list.length; i++)
window.open("http://search.twitter.com/search?q="
+ query + "+from:" + list[i].screen_name)
};
xmlhttp.send(null)


This will open one search window per followee- so don't try this if you have loads of'em. You will hit a limit in Firefox' default config, and you can increase it using the property:


browser.tabs.maxOpenBeforeWarn


Still, you will hit a hardware/hardcoded limit if you're not careful with how many people you're following. I told you this only has educational value, right?

1 comment:

dustin said...

Note that twitterspy will also just handle the people you're following for you.

In identispy, I didn't do this, and instead just track from:user for each user I want to follow. "stealth tracking" kshep calls it, I believe.