More On Blackbird Pie From Twitter's Robin Sloan

I feel bad for Blackbird Pie-creator Robin Sloan, who evidently got an earful after the feature tool was released yesterday.

So I just want to add a stronger caveat here. First of all: I think we’ll drop the royal “we” on Twitter Media from now on–it’s confusing. To be clear, this is just @robinsloan here, pitching a little hack of mine. Please regard it as such, even though it lives on this fancy domain. Seeing people call it a “feature” is making me cringe, because I know what kind of care goes into real Twitter features! This is not one of those.

Let me underscore the point: in the course of writing this blog, I coded up a simple script that I found helpful, so I decided to share it with you. It’s a prototype. It’s really rough. It doesn’t even work in a lot of places! But that’s what we mean by “experiment,” right? And, as part of the Twitter Media team, I couldn’t credibly ask producers and developers at media companies to experiment and prototype if I wasn’t doing the same thing myself.

And yes, I know it doesn’t work on Tumblr.

I wondered why it didn’t warrant a mention on the official Twitter blog. Now we know.

In my case, I feel that perhaps Humble Pie is more appropriate, certainly after the gaff I made last night. What can I say? It was very late, and I was very tired. In my weakened state, I failed to pay much attention to what was in the code, instead focusing on the size of the thing which, while still several orders of magnitude too large, does actually embed most of the important stuff, protecting you in case it gets deleted (on Twitter).

I mean, I still won’t use it – at this stage, I think image-grabbed tweets present better, and you just have to look at this awful page from The Guardian to see how local styling can make Twitter look really quite horrible – but all credit to Robin for putting this together, especially as it was all on his own back.