Aperator: Making Tweets Enable Actionable Commands on Third Party Web Applications
AbstractTwitter has become a persistent part of our digital lives, connecting us not only to our individual audiences but also to an entire landscape of applications built for the web. While much has been done to support the Twit-ter ecosystem outside of Twitter, little has been done within Twitter to power those same applications. This work introduces a service called Aperator, which sup-ports application-specific actionable commands through tweets. This ability creates several interesting opportuni-ties for both end-users and application developers build-ing on the Twitter platform. For example, the action-able command capability allows a link that a Twitter user shares with his followers to be directly added to any of the user’s connected link sharing networks, such as Deli-cious or Read it Later. The client side of this system has a console for end-users to sign up and provide their login credentials for various web services that our system sup-ports: Delicious, Foursquare, Read it Later, Foursquare etc. The system’s backend has two cron jobs that run every minute to: (a) retrieve and parse tweets from a specific twitter account and store them in a command form in a MySQL database, and (b) execute the unex-ecuted commands found in the users tweets. This paper describes the concept, implementation, and results from an experimental study of this new application.