Twitter builds ‘complete reference centre’ for developers

Twitter has combined gnip.com and dev.twitter.com to produce the new developer.twitter.com site, which is said to be “a complete reference centre” for its platform and a “hub for all developer resources.”

According to Twitter staff developer advocate Andy Piper, apart from relocating the content from gnip.com and dev.twitter.com in one place—including the social network’s publisher platform, Twitter Kit tools, ads APIs (application-programming interfaces), Gnip APIs and standard Rest and streaming APIs—Twitter added pages to help developers with using its platform in their applications and examples of products they can use to help choose the appropriate endpoints for their apps.

With this amalgamation, it has become easier to find the endpoints and guidance needed to build on Twitter due to reorganised documentation and API reference materials, as Piper wrote in a blog post.

As part of the rebuild, the previous API console will be phased out. Piper said it ‘did not keep pace with new endpoints’, and instead recommends twurl, Twitter’s command line tool to test simple Twitter API queries.

This news has been perhaps overshadowed by the announcement that Twitter is moving to 280 characters per message from 140. Aliza Rosen, product manager at Twitter, put one aspect of the change down to the differences between languages.

“When I tweet in English, I quickly run into the 140-character limit and have to edit my tweet down so it fits,” Rosen wrote. “Sometimes, I have to remove a word that conveys an important meaning or emotion, or I don’t send my tweet at all. But when Iku tweets in Japanese, he doesn’t have the same problem. He finishes sharing his thought and still has room to spare.

“This is because in languages like Japanese, Korean, and Chinese you can convey about double the amount of information in one character as you can in many other languages, like English, Spanish, Portuguese, or French.”

Rosen added: “We want every person around the world to easily express themselves on Twitter, so we're doing something new: we're going to try out a longer limit, 280 characters, in languages impacted by cramming (which is all except Japanese, Chinese, and Korean).”

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