June 2, 2008

NASA Microblogs!

Microblog (Noun): A blog that only allows for very, very small entries - usually 140 characters or less.

I'm the first to admit that I am not a huge fan of microblogging (AKA Twittering, named after the most popular microblogging service, Twitter). Why not? Well, too many Tweets (really, I am not making this up!) are simply too silly to be all that interesting. For example:

  • "I just woke up."
  • "I'm at work."
  • "I'm updating my Facebook page."
Truthfully, I'd probably like microblogging more if I were of an age where I needed to know everything my friends were doing at any given time. However, I'm not. And that makes Twitter a little superfluous to me. Or so I thought...

But just when I thought Twitter was beyond my interest level, I found out that NASA is using Twitter to keep people up to date with the Mars Lander. Ok, even I have to admit, that is pretty darn cool. Especially considering that they've found ice on Mars! You, too, can keep track of the Mars Lander on Twitter.

Who else of importance besides Phoenix, the Mars Lander, is Twittering? To start, all of the presidential candidates, but, really, wouldn't you think this is probably being written and submitted by a lowly Web 2.0 savvy staffer? Another interesting Twitter user is House Floor, which provides live updates from the House of Representatives.

Some public libraries are using Twitter to push out announcements to their followers. Check out the Houston Public Library's Twitter page for more inspiration.

It was refreshing to see Twitter being using for such great projects!