Twitter Friend Averages (POLL)

I haven’t talked about it much (or at all) on my blog, but I’ve been developing a Twitter application for the past few months.  Every time, I think I’m done, my intrepid beta tester, HighTechDad, does what any good beta tester should do.  He finds where my application is severely lacking, sending me back for some furious code-rewriting sessions.  My latest versions seemed to work well enough for my Twitter username, but I ran into a problem when I attempted to "stress test" the application by running it through guykawasaki‘s name.  The web server runs out of memory trying to process the 100,000+ people he follows.

I was trying to think of a way around this, but then I thought: Perhaps it is best not to.  Perhaps Guy is such an edge scenario that I would be better off pulling the first 5,000 he follows and leaving it at that.  Not to give too much away, but my application is intended to analyze your following list in the hopes of finding more people for you to follow.  So the audience is most likely not someone already following over 100,000 people, but people following 1,000 or less people.

This led me to question what is the average number of people that Twitter users follow.  Is it 500?  1,000?  5,000?  More?  Less?  To help me answer this, please answer the following poll.  It is easy to determine how many people you follow.  Just stop by your Twitter page and note the number above "Following."  Then choose the answer in the poll that best matches how many people you follow.  NOTE:  Do not use the number above "Followers."  I’m not looking for the number of people that follow you.  I’m looking for the number of people that *YOU* follow.


WiiFit Workout Generator

As you probably know, I’ve been working out using the WiiFit.  As the weeks progressed, I realized two things:

1. I was avoiding some workouts that I didn’t like simply because they challenged me more.

2. I was spending *WAY* too much time between workouts trying to decide what to do next (thus letting my heartrate drop).

I decided I needed some sort of system to randomly select the workouts for me so I could just follow a predetermined list.  Since nothing seemed readily available, I did what any webdeveloper would do: I built it.  It’s gone through a few iterations but I think it’s ready to finally be unleased on the world.  So go ahead, make your own workouts, and get (Wii)fit!

The WiiFit Workout Generator

If you have any comments or suggestions for new features, let me know about them.  I always consider my web applications perpetual works in progress.  There’s always room to improve!

Oh, and thanks go out to the wonderful jQuery and jQuery UI team for their great work on the jQuery and jQuery UI libraries.  I couldn’t have built this site without them.  (Ok, I could have, but it wouldn’t have looked as cool!)

Bingo II: Revenge Of The Debate

As I said in my last entry, Palin Bingo was such a success that I decided to make another run of it for the upcoming Presidential debates.  I’ve removed the Palin-specific words (like "Trig", "Todd", and "Alaska") and added in some words that we missed the last time around.  In fact, we’ve added 71% more words.  There are actually 20 quindecillion (2 * 1049) possible Bingo cards.

I also added in some cool effects using jQuery (my favorite JavaScript library) and two plugins for it – the jQuery Corner Plugin and the jQuery Gradient Plugin.

Finally, I changed the center Free space.  You can now to choose Obama or McCain in the center (or opt to have it randomly filled).  It’s up to you whether that means that the Bingo game is only in play if Obama is talking, McCain is talking, or either one.

The debate is in a couple of days (as I post this), so spread the word.  Tell your family and friends.  Print out your Debate Bingo cards, pop some popcorn, and play Debate Bingo!

The New Digs

Welcome to my new blog.  With the last post, I told you a little about myself.  Now I figured I’d tell you a little about the website.  Things are a bit in flux right now.  I might move a sidebar here, a couch there, that sort of thing.  As it stands now, though, there are two features that I’m sure will stay.

The first is the "Recent Tweets" bar.  I got into Twitter when the jQuery team decided to post updates via Twitter.  I signed up and quickly realized what a useful tool it could be.  I post on there often to my wife, coworkers, and others I’ve met along the way.

The second feature is "TechyDad’s shared items."  I use Google Reader to keep up with the RSS Feeds of various websites.  I’ve liked Google’s "Share" feature for some time, but couldn’t find a specific way of using it.  Now I can.  Now, when I share an news item, it will appear on my list.  It might be a recipe from A Year of CrockPotting or an interesting article on web development over at Ajaxian.

Now for some stuff that will change.  The search bar might move, the Categories link will take on a "cloud" appearence.  The Blogroll will be more customized.  The other items on the sidebar might stay or they might go.  I’m not sure at the moment.

Overall, though, I’m liking my new digs and I’m ready to settle in.

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