Ambientweet


What?

Ambientweet is a minimalist twitter client, and it is intended to just be left running in the background, as a way of watching a twitter stream pass by.

You can watch your own stream, mentions of your twitter name, or focus on tweets by a particular user, or containing a particular hash tag or search term.

Each Ambientweet window shows just one tweet at a time. This is a deliberate design decision, which allows for a minimal user interface. This, in turn, means that the text can be bigger and there's no need for extraneous clutter like toolbars or buttons whilst you watch the twitter world go by.

You can use Ambientweet to post, reply and re-tweet, so it's perfectly adequate for adding to your stream and responding to what you read.

For other Twitter functionality though - the things we do less regularly, such as viewing profiles, following people, managing lists and accounts, and so on - it simply redirects you to the Twitter website, which already has great support for these features.

Why?

I spend most of the day working on my computer, with my Twitter client running quietly in the background. Occasionally, when I'm waiting for something, I'll glance over to see what's going on in the world of Twitter.

Most existing clients don't lend themselves very well to this usage pattern. It's rare that I actually want to bring the client to the front and scroll through a big list of tweets, yet that is the way that most clients are set up. It's also rare that I want to post, or retweet something, yet most clients have an interface which dedicates a substantial amount of space to these functions.

So I set out to create a client that works the way I want it to... and looks good with the font size set up really high so that you can leave it running the whole time on media centres or second monitors.

Where?

Ambientweet 1.2 is now free.

You can find the release notes, including a list of known problems and the latest changes, here.

How?

Full details on how to use Ambientweet can be found in the user guide within the application.

Hopefully most of the functionality should be fairly self-explanatory. If not, please send me some feedback, and tell me what is confusing you.

Similarly, please send feedback if it doesn't work the way that you think it should, or if you have some good ideas on how to make it better. I should warn you that I will liberally help myself to any good ideas and run off into the sunset...

To get you started, here are some thing that you may not have realised that you can do with Ambientweet:

  • customise the font and text size
  • focus on all tweets, or just mentions of yourself
  • force it on to the next or previous tweet
  • post, reply and retweet
  • ask the window to auto-size, so that it always fits the current tweet
  • sort the tweets in oldest first or newest first order, or by how often you've viewed them