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twittertoolsIf you follow more than a hundred people on Twitter, your tweet stream can get overwhelming. On the other hand, you might have already had enough of the sharing overload on social networks and may be keeping away from Twitter altogether. Whatever the case, information overload has become a real cause of concern for many of us. You are not alone.

In the hundreds of tweets in your stream, how do you distinguish the signal from the noise?

How can you use Twitter without missing the important stuff and not getting stressed out reading each and every tweet? In this article, let us explore 3 little known ways how to use Twitter in a way that will not overwhelm you.

The Twitter Times

The Twitter Times gives you three newspaper-style views of what’s hot on Twitter in real-time:

  1. A personalized newspaper generated from the Twitter feed of people you follow
  2. A view of the most tweeted news stories from major media sources
  3. A view of the most tweeted links from popular Twitter Lists

For the personalized newspaper view, you should sign in with your Twitter account. The first time you use the service, it takes up to an hour to generate your personalized newspaper. Twitter Times will send you an @reply when your newspaper is delivered. For subsequent visits, you can simply enter your username to access your Twitter Times.

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how to use twitter

The latest stories are shown in the main section of the page, while top news stories from history are displayed in a column on the right. You can click a headline to visit the original site in a new tab of your browser. For many stories, you can click “˜Show all text’ to see the entire post within the site.

For each story in your newspaper, The Twitter Times shows you which friends tweeted it, along with friends of friends. You can ReTweet any story using the retweet button.

how to use twitter

Using the Media Sources and Twitter Lists sections, you can get newspaper-style digests of the most popular content being shared on Twitter without drowning in information overload.

Feedtrace

Feedtrace is a personalized link aggregator service based on Twitter. It shows you the Top 50 links to blog posts, articles, news, pictures, etc. ranked automatically based on popularity of the link, authority of the people linking, and the content you have liked and shared in the past.

Sign in to your Twitter account from the top left to access the Feedtrace sidebar. This works as a browsing companion while you check out the Top 50 links being shared on Twitter. You can check the “˜only following’ box to filter only those links shared by people your follow. If you wish, you can also see the top links from a specific website, for example the New York Times.

how to use twitter

When you click on a link, the sidebar minimizes to the left, letting you view the linked page. From within the sidebar, you can ReTweet any of the links. Using the buttons at the top, you can also refresh, lock, or hide the Feedtrace sidebar.

Feedtrace Buzz

To see what people are saying in the tweets about the link you’re visiting, click the Buzz tab on the sidebar. From here, you can also @reply to the person, mark the tweet as a Favorite, or Retweet it.

Cadmus

Cadmus filters your stream to find similar tweets and automatically groups them to reduce the noise. It also highlights popular conversations among your Twitter friends so you don’t miss them.

Once you add your Twitter account to Cadmus, it shows you a sidebar with personalized trending topics and popular content from different time spans. You can view most popular content from the last 6 or 12 hours, last day, or even last week. You can retweet, @reply, or send a new tweet from within Cadmus.

Cadmus Sidebar

Important tweets are displayed in the main window. You can expand Twitter conversations as shown below, which shows @replies as comments. You can also “˜add a comment’, which sends an @reply on Twitter.

Cadmus Conversations

Related tweets on the same topic are grouped together as “˜Related Posts’. You can expand them to see all the tweets of the same topic. Apart from Twitter, you can also add RSS feeds and FriendFeed streams to Cadmus. By intelligently grouping together similar tweets and highlighting the most popular content, Cadmus ensures that you never miss the really important updates from your Twitter friends.

You might also want to check out Topikality Topikality - Improve Google Alerts & Get the Articles You Want Topikality - Improve Google Alerts & Get the Articles You Want Read More and ReadTwit Readtwit - Turn Links in Twitter Tweets into an RSS Feed Readtwit - Turn Links in Twitter Tweets into an RSS Feed Read More , two other services we’ve covered before on MakeUseOf to help deal with too much information.

The Twitter Times, Feedtrace, and Cadmus are simple ways to find great content being shared on Twitter, personalized to your taste. Each of them has a different interface and style. You can choose whichever suits your needs the best and enjoy the best of Twitter without suffering from information overload. If you have any other tips, share with us in the comments!

  1. jordi
    March 3, 2010 at 8:06 am

    Thanks for your post. We have just launched a new release. You can now set settings for us to help you discover the most interesting tweets. You can select languages and categories, that will help you get the best content possible. Any feedback is more than welcome. Thanks

  2. Tilla Torrens
    February 28, 2010 at 10:32 pm

    I hadn't heard of some of these, thanks for sharing. I have to tell you the makeuseof newsletter is one of the few I always read :) My favorite site for managing info overload is http://www.yourversion.com - it updates in real time with not just Tweets matching my specific interests, but also blogs, news, websites, and videos. And when I find something I want to share, I can email, Tweet or Facebook it.

  3. Tilla Torrens
    March 1, 2010 at 7:32 am

    I hadn't heard of some of these, thanks for sharing. I have to tell you the makeuseof newsletter is one of the few I always read :) My favorite site for managing info overload is http://www.yourversion.com - it updates in real time with not just Tweets matching my specific interests, but also blogs, news, websites, and videos. And when I find something I want to share, I can email, Tweet or Facebook it.

  4. Dan Novik
    February 28, 2010 at 9:54 pm

    I am using links in twitter: http://tlink.linkstore.ru
    Just get links from any account (including my own of course)

  5. Dan Novik
    February 28, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    I am using links in twitter: http://tlink.linkstore.ru
    Just get links from any account (including my own of course)

  6. Jessica Deva
    February 27, 2010 at 7:20 am

    I don't know why Twitter Time.es isn't more popular - I've been using it for months and it's a great way to get a higher signal v. noise ratio.

  7. Jessica Deva
    February 26, 2010 at 10:20 pm

    I don't know why Twitter Time.es isn't more popular - I've been using it for months and it's a great way to get a higher signal v. noise ratio.

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