Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Twitter Conversations: More fun with Yahoo Pipes

Lets imagine that you can’t actually do all of this directly in Twitter Search like this:

(Now contrived) How To follows:

I stumbled upon an impromptu (or so they claim) twitter interview between Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) of ABC and Sen. John McCain (@senjohnmccain).  Unfortunately, short of following both of them, it was hard to get a gist of the actual conversation – I tried the Conversation view on Twitter Search, and a couple of other services, like Tweader (appears broken) and Quotably (dead).

Twitter Search has an advanced search/allows parameters to specify searching for tweets from one person to another, but that only gives you half a conversation.  And as far as I can tell, Twitter search doesn’t allow multiple from:/to: pairs.  Enter Yahoo Pipes’ union module:

This module merges up to five separate sources of items into a single list of items.

Since Twitter Search results can be had in both Atom and RSS flavor, this means we’re good to go:

…and this is where I discovered that you could indeed do duplex conversation searches in twitter search, so the rest of this will be short…

See; click View Source or Clone to play with it (requires Yahoo id).

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Monday, June 15, 2009

3 steps to a better Tech Crunch (feed)

I know I’m not alone in having a lack of confidence in the journalistic ability of Michael Arrington’s employees over at TechCrunch – MG Siegler’s outrage over Microsoft’s latest (rather sad) marketing efforts is just the latest to draw annoyed comments.  With 20-30 posts per day, it gets pretty time-consuming just trying to filter the good stories from the bad, since all that Google Reader gives you is the headline and the start of the body:


Wouldn’t it be nice to also know who wrote that headline so that you knew better how to interpret it?  Well, you can do so quite easily, in three simple steps.

Step 1: Create a Yahoo Pipe

Go to



Step 2: Configure your Pipe

Add the following modules:

  • Sources – FetchFeed
  • Operators – Loop
  • String – StringBuilder (drag onto the Loop module)

Configure and connect as below, then save.



Step 3: Subscribe to your new feed:



Or, if all that’s too complicated, you can just subscribe to the Pipe I created:

PS! Here’s a filtered feed for Michael Arrington posts only:

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Monday, April 14, 2008 (or please come back up,

I guess I didn't realize how addicted I am to before it apparently went down this morning.

Bad Yahoo!, bad.  Please bring it back up.

UPDATE (11:29):  And it's back up.  Phew.

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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Links for 2007-05-30 []

Link - Thu, 31 May 2007 01:00:00 GMT - Feed (1 subs)

Sent using Rmail R|mail.

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Friday, March 30, 2007

Links for 2007-03-29 []

Sent using Rmail R|mail.

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Friday, February 09, 2007

Links for 2007-02-08 []

Sent using R|mail.

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Friday, October 20, 2006

Links for 2006-10-19 []

Sent using R|mail.

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Saturday, October 14, 2006

Links for 2006-10-13 []

Sent using R|mail.

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Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Idea: Truly Anonymous Search

Ok - so this is goofy, but in the light of the AOL fiasco, it's worth considering:

Create simple wrappers around Google, Yahoo, and Live - call them Anonymoogle, Anonymahoo and Anonymive, etc. (all three .com domains are available) - utilizing the respective sites' API. (Start with free versions, then go with ads to support paying for additional queries if things take off.)

Keep it simple, don't try to add features beyond those of the original site - the only point here is anonymity. Since every search will originate from the same site there'll be no way to tell 2 searchers apart. Of course a privacy policy of not tracking the users of the anonymous sites will have to be strictly adhered to.

Shouldn't take more than a few hours of real coding. If nothing else it could spur some minor interest in the topic, and some cease and desist letters from the search giants' lawyers, which would only stir more interest in the blogosphere.


Monday, December 12, 2005

Yahoo! My Web 2.0 vs.

I wonder what Yahoo's buyout of will mean to Yahoo's own My Web 2.0?

I'm a tad slow, so I just discovered MyWeb2 the day before the Yahoolicious deal, but from a first glance, MyWeb2 has one notable feature that doesn't: the option of privacy. I guess that feature will come to as well now, along with ads, I'm sure.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Wanted: Ajax based WYSIWYG Wiki/Blog engine

I want an Ajax based, WYSIWYG powered Wiki/blog, with tags, rss and search, and since we're already ajax - an in-page chat for any logged-on users. Come on, MS (Telligent), Google, Yahoo! Can't you get this done?

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Monday, October 10, 2005

I sense a definite decline in my future blogging frequency now that I finally get Once upon a time I used the Yahoo Toolbar's bookmarks, but with the death of my Yahoo account, and my subsequent self-imposed boycott of Yahoo!, that went away. When Google bought Blogspot, I figured I'd give that a try as a way to remember stuff, and initially I only intended to use the blog for links, but as the posts above (and this) clearly indicate, the soapbox was too tempting...

Now, finally I have - should have created it a year ago.

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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Spam, powered by Yahoo!

I received an otherwise uninteresting spam email today, with an interesting link:*-****.net/home.asp (I have ****'ed out the final domain name to avoid giving them any additional advertising).

The above is a fully valid url - ending up at Yahoo!. Yahoo then is kind enough to redirect the unfortunate user to the spammer's site:****.net/home.asp

Yahoo actually allows this without any questions. Try*- for example. Or*-

As best I can tell, Yahoo uses this service to redirect (and track) clicks on ads, etc. They have another service that does the same:, but at least it's smart enough to check the final destination:*- (or maybe it just uses a different scheme).


Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Yahoo!'s Attitude Stinks

There's just no kinder way to describe Yahoo!'s attitude towards its customers. I had my own share of problems with them, but they're nothing compared to what this family is going through: Dead soldier's kin plead for e-mail.

"While we sympathize with any grieving family, Yahoo! accounts and any contents therein are nontransferable" even after death, said Karen Mahon, a Yahoo! spokeswoman.

Yeah - very sympathetic: "Our hands are tied by our own policy."

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Friday, July 16, 2004

Lookout + Microsoft = More competition for GMail

As mentioned earlier here and here, while I was waiting for my GMail account, I came across Lookout, a fabulous add-in for Outlook. While I don't save quite as much time using Lookout as they suggest I might, it really does help when trying to find that e-mail that I sent to my boss half a year ago, or when attempting to locate an old spec file in a network share folder.

Now Lookout Software has been bought by Microsoft, or more specifically MSN. This may be just because someone within MS realized that this is a great tool that would be nice to add to Outlook, but I think it really is a direct response to the e-mail threat posed by GMail and Yahoo! Mail...

Lookout / Microsoft Q&A here.


Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Oddpost + Yahoo! vs GMail

So Yahoo bought Oddpost. GMail's excellent DHTML interface will be getting competition: Oddpost and Yahoo!


Monday, June 28, 2004

Held hostage to my desk by Yahoo! Customer Service

I'm being held hostage at my desk, listening to Yahoo Customer Service's "All Agents are busy at this time, please continue to hold". It took about 10 minutes to talk to the first person, about 5 minutes to explain the situation to her, 5 minutes waiting for her to see who to forward me to, then another 2-3 minutes to wait for the next person, who within a minute decided to put me on hold for a supervisor. 71 minutes and counting.. At what point do I give up?

Apparently 78 minutes is the magic number.

Melissa is a very friendly but completely unyielding supervisor in the Yahoo! Billing department. According to her, SBC failed to unmerge my account back when I cancelled my DSL (or rather - I failed to have SBC unmerge the accounts) and now since I cancelled the Continuation service (which no longer is available, by the way) I agreed, according to the original contract, to have my account deleted.

Never mind that the account is still there, that she (and any other Yahoo! employee) can get access to the account - I can't be allowed access. It's a matter of policy, and there is no supervisor that I can talk to.

My only recourse, Melissa informs me, is to send a letter to Yahoo! CEO Terry Semel.

Great. My wife will be very happy to hear that the CEO of a $48.05 billion company has time to take interest in our "free" email accounts.

At least I now know what to use my Gmail account for.

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Sunday, June 27, 2004

"Yahoo" is right

ya·hoo (yäh, y-) n. pl. ya·hoos A crude or brutish person. See Synonyms at boor.
Stay far, far away from the Charlie Foxtrot that is SBC Yahoo! In the ongoing saga of trying to extradite my Yahoo userid from the clutches of SBC, the mindless goons have decided to cut me off. What's worse - because my wife's account was linked to mine, she's cut off too:
You can continue to use your original Yahoo! ID. You no longer have access to the SBC Yahoo! Internet services because your account has been cancelled by . You can still use your original Yahoo! ID to access personal information such as Mail, Address Book, and Messenger friends. Your subscription to a la carte Premium Services, if any, will resume under your Yahoo! ID . Choose "Continue" to begin using your original Yahoo! ID now.
Ok - I'm pressing Continue
Your SBC Yahoo! Sub Account has been suspended You have been restricted from access to any SBC Yahoo! Internet services by the Master Account (). If your Sub Account (peroskar) is not reactivated by the Master Account () , it will be cancelled. Once the account is cancelled, the settings, personalized information and any a la carte Premium Services associated with your SBC Yahoo! ID will be deleted, unless you had combined your existing Yahoo! ID with your SBC Yahoo! ID. Only Master Account ID () is able to reactivate your account. Please have Master Account ID () login and go to 'My Account' to reactivate.
OK - only problem is I AM trying to log in with my master account. Except SBC/Yahoo thinks my master account is () (yeah - nothing)

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Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Reconsidering GMail

So now I have 2GB of mail storage, and I can search my e-mail. Of course I'm paying through the nose for it, and I really don't know what I'll do with it. GMail, which sounded so great, all of a sudden doesn't entice me all that much. Which of course was exactly what Yahoo wanted.


Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Gmail Request List

I want GMail, so I can get rid of my Yahoo account, so I can stop paying it and SBC money for something I used to get for free. Begging publicly is not beneath me: Channel9 Wiki: GmailRequestList