Sam Harrelson

Almost Real Time


I talk a good deal about Twitter’s deafeningly absent (but once very present) Track feature because Track was helping to usher in a new paradigm of finding information in a post-google age until the revolutionary functionality was thrown out with the bath water of scalability earlier this year as Twitter sought to sure itself up.

I still have faith and hope that Track will be restored to Twitter (or a similar service with significant uptake… what could have been but never matured into) in some capacity, even if its in a “Pro” package. There’s just too much potential to let the idea and implementation of Track disappear into scalability limbo.

I’m glad to see there are services trying to fill the gap between minutes and hours of latency with RSS with a more real time experience. One of those services is – About Us: “ delivers notifications that interest you in near real time. It eliminates the need for you to constantly check on classified listings, blogs or social networking sites. Notifications are pushed to your destinations of choice such as instant messenger, mobile phone, email, desktop or web application. “

I’ve been using the service for the past week. While the response time is dependent on the actual services being observed, it is a good clearing house for info that you need to get sooner than later.

There’s nothing like the real thing, but it’s good to see the drive towards real time discoverability picking up steam with other services.

Posted: 11.20.2008

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