Say hello to gutenHashTag, and it will say hello to you.
During the last period of time I have been breathlessly working on various projects, of both commercial and personal nature. But this is not about any of them.
This is what always happens.
You find yourself dealing with way more projects than you can handle. But you try to make it happen. You go the extra mile, and then a few more. Finally, you get to a point where you start seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. It's a dot, but you can see it.
And then, just when you least need it, you come up with a new idea for... something. It doesn't matter what, it just looks like a good idea at the time.
"It's OK, it can wait until I have some free time," you think to yourself.
But the idea—which we all know to be the most resilient parasite—does not simply wait. It just sits there. In your face. Blocking any other type of thoughts. Regardless of their nature or importance. Until you deal with it.
And free time? Please.
Eventually, you give in. Even if it's of zero practical importance. You invite the new thing in, like the 7th person in an old, rusty hatchback, and you keep true.
Besides being fun to look at, it also turned out to be quite useful. I now know which parts of the world see what I tweet. It does not account for night-shifts and insomnia, though.
What it does take account for, however, is daylight. The more lit the text for a city is, the more sunlight there is there. I use Yahoo! to get the exact sunrise/sunset hours and then take it from there.
Want it for yourself? Be my host
Naturally, it's open-source and you can find it on GitHub.
Then, you'll need two things if you want it as your Twitter background.
- A Twitter app. You'll get the four keys you need as soon as you create one. Keep in mind that the consumer secret should never be human-readable in your app.
- Some sort of server, to keep pushing it through the API. I have a cronjob set to 15 minutes.
* Yes, that is PHP what you're staring at. Now get off your high horse, it's just an experiment.
Of course, there would have to be a lot of trust involved...
This all looks fine and dandy, but who knows how many countries and cultures am I offending here. I seriously have no idea what most of those texts are saying (all hail Google Translate).
So please, correct me
if where I'm wrong. After all, it's all an open source.
For all those who feel offended for not having their city listed, don't blame me for living somewhere boring. And no, I did not just add Bucharest as a courtesy of my nationality. You didn't hear this from me, but they say it's to become the next Valley.
If anybody shows interest in contributing, and I hope you do (cause hell, I might have even got the fonts wrong), personalizing them with inside, regional slang would make it ten times better.
Of course, there would have to be a lot of trust involved. But I am positive nobody would ever try to trick me into looking silly on the Internet.
© March 2012 Ovidiu Cherecheș