Whether you view your friends’ tweets on Twitter.com or through one of the many desktop clients (Twhirl, Snitter, Twitterific), they’re always listed in backwards chronological order — latest tweet in the Friend Timeline at the top. A few websites out there use the API to display the tweets in different orders and configurations. Ones that I find particularly unhelpful are those that lay out the tweets in grid format so that you can see the latest tweet from each of your friends on one page. Both Gridgit and Twitter100 do this, and I’ve written about them here and here respectively.
Now there’s a new tool on the block: Quotably. This one makes @reply conversations easier to follow by displaying them as message threads. It’s cool because you get to see where your replies occurred in the thread, as well as the entire Twitterverse of replies — even if they’re from people you don’t follow.
What I find the most interesting is the original tweet that sparked the conversation. It’s a peek into a world you wouldn’t be able to see otherwise. I wonder what happens if someone’s tweets are protected…
There are also permanent links to each conversation represented by a hash mark at the end of each tweet; great for referencing and archiving. [Note: This feature was added because of a request by the author of the TechCrunch post referenced below]
Unfortunately Quotably isn’t perfect. The threads are pieced together by timestamp, so if you’re engaging in multiple conversations simultaneously, the tweet may be lumped in the wrong conversation. I’m hoping this bug is worked out soon. In all fairness, this was just a weekend project of Ben Tucker. You can follow updates to the tool at its dedicated Twitter account.
My Quotably can be found at http://www.quotably.com/whitneyhess