Update : The application was renamed to blu. The previous name was much cooler, but they probably have their reasons! 🙂
Find it here.

Although Twitter hasn’t taken any forms of hysteria yet in The Netherlands, more and more people start using it. I started learning its advantages during MIX’07 where people would notify the world that they’d go down to a restaurant to have dinner, inviting others to join them. You can probably guess what the talks were about.

So I started using Twitter, but not really often. The thing is, in the USA you can get updates over SMS, but unfortunately this was turned off a few months ago for Europe. So now you need a cool client on your desktop, laptop, mobile and everywhere to effectively use Twitter. I use Tiny Twitter on my mobile and it’s kind of okay. There’s Witty (using WPF) for your desktop, but I haven’t been using it.

chirp Since a few days however, a new desktop client called chirp was released. It’s using Windows Presentation Foundation for its user interface and it’s looking awesome. As its maker, thirteen23 says, “There have been a lot of attempts at a great Twitter desktop client, but most have have resulted in glorified readers— not a great experience.*” And *chirp delivers on the experience.

Some highlights

  • The user interface is awesome. From start to using it to finishing, it delivers!
    • When starting it’s showing a great animation and all messages fly into the application.
    • When refreshing, in the border of the application a light starts scrolling. When refresh is finished, the border flashes.
    • When you want to tweet (update) a balloon start popping up with a great animation. While typing, in the background the number of open characters is displayed and counting down.
    • When a message is a reply to some other message, an arrow is displayed. Clicking the arrow rotates the current message, grays out everything else and displays the messages that was replied on.
    • Scrolling down to read older messages means scrolling endlessly. Messages are loaded from Twitter when needed, so it’s not a x-MB file on messages loading in when *chirp is started.
    • Reply on other messages by clicking the reply button on them.
    • Favorite users get notifications when they added a new message

There are some features missing, like being able to view replies from people you’re not following, TinyUrl (and others) inclusion, ability to see replies to more than one reply deep and minimize into system-tray. But I’m sure they’re coming, as this is just the first drop and thirteen23 have promised to update to tool. They also promised an update a few days ago and it’s still not here, but we’re patient…