The editions of my daily newspaper that I most look forward to are those when my favorite columnist, Bryony Gordon, is in attendance. As an example, in her Notebook column a couple of weeks ago she happened to mention that not only has her own cat posted a birthday greeting to her on her Facebook wall, but she is also following the tweets from somebody’s bicycle.
OK, yes, I do take a “highbrow” newspaper; mainly because I can’t cope with the relentless excitement of the tabloids, or suffer their lowest-common-denominator coverage of important events. Maybe it’s also down to the fact that they feel the need to print long or difficult words in a bold typeface, edit the stories to accentuate their own agenda, and take advantage of every opportunity spread wild panic amongst their readership.
Yet, even though the Daily Telegraph does actually print real news, it’s often still fun to read. The humor in the letters page is surprisingly refreshing, especially if you follow the trends from day to day. And Matt, their political cartoonist, simply can’t be beaten. His contribution to the editorial spread about the News of the World’s alleged phone hacking and police bribery scandal was a picture of a police van with a sign on the back saying “No payments kept in this vehicle overnight”. Wonderful.
However, we need to get back to the tweeting theme. Why would anyone set up a Twitter account for their bicycle? The suggestion is so that they can send messages to it such as “I’m coming to pump up your tyres.” Maybe they also set up one for their microwave oven that tweets when the dinner is cooked? Or one for their pet budgerigar so it can tweet (sorry about that) when it’s hungry?
Ah, but maybe there is an upcoming trend here, and a new remote control opportunity for hardware and software vendors. By making their products tweet-aware (tweetable?) users could simply fire up a Twitter client on their phone or laptop and fine-tune their web server farm or administer their DNS entries remotely using a new standard protocol. We could call it H-Tweet-Tweet-P. Maybe even use it to install a new version of Windows, or fire up an additional VM to cope with increased demand for online applications. “All happning heer, need xtra server on line. Start, Admin Tools, Hyper-V, Alt-F, Run, OK.”
And your computers could expose their status and management information over H-Tweet-Tweet-P as well. All you’d need to do is follow your servers in your Twitter app – no need to shell out hundreds of dollars on System Center or some other fancy remote monitoring software. Imagine the scene on some idyllic foreign beach, with the sun shining and the waves lapping at your feet, when the geek next to you reads “Hi, server 27 here, hope you having gr8 holiday. Just letting you know I can’t find NTLDR…”.
Meanwhile, the best thing of all about the Daily Telegraph is that it’s the only broadsheet on the market now, so I’m one of the shrinking minority of people who can fold and turn the pages of a proper-sized newspaper without having to spread it out on the floor every time – even on an airplane. Let’s face it – everyone should strive to acquire at least one useful life skill…