The lead tech over at Twitter, Pankaj Gupta, tweeted a formula that you can use to calculate your rank on Twitter if it were ranked by number of followers. Since I thought this formula was pretty cool I figured I'd take a second to put together a quick site to calculate this for you.
I've decided to take JamesShiner.com in a new direction. As you can see I haven't been posting very often and that's because I don't have the time. I'm too busy making predictions for the future of the web and developing awesome prototypes, both of which the world never sees. That's about to change!
I'm starting a section of the site called "Shiner Labs" where I'm going to post these cool prototypes I come up with. These will range from something I put together in 15 minutes to something I've been working on for months. I know that by posting some of my top secret prototypes some people may steal them and turn them into money-making sites, but that's fine. Truth is I don't have the time to do everything that pops into my head, and it's always cool to see an idea become something real, even if I'm not the one who does it.
That brings me to the next part of the new JamesShiner.com direction: predictions. Instead of writing about news that already happened, I'm going to start sharing the predictions I have for website ideas, consumer products and overall direction of the web. There have been too many predictions I've made to friends and family that I haven't shared with the world that later turn into awesome products somewhere. It's not that I want credit for these, but I do want to get them out there as they enter my mind and maybe inspire someone to turn an idea into something awesome. We all know ideas are a dime a dozen. It's all about execution!
To get started I'll share some ideas I had that have already turned into cool products:
Check-Ins For Anything
Back in late 2009 when I was working for Zaang, who recently officially entered the deadpool, we were working on a product that offered "worlds" for users to talk about anything they wanted to. They could create worlds for TV shows, sports, teams, entertainers, etc. I had the vision to create a check-in system that allowed users to check-in to anything, whether it was watching the latest episode of "Celebrity Rehab" or this Sunday's Patriots game. They could then have a conversation with others who also checked-in to that. Unfortunately I was let go before this vision could become a reality as the parent company was changing focus. My non-compete did not allow me to pursue this idea on my own, but fortunately someone did make it a reality: GetGlue.
Interests on Twitter
On February 24, 2009 I registered the domain TweeplePages.com. Two days later I launched Tweeple Pages, a directory of Twitter users organized by their interests. Almost overnight I had thousands of users sharing tens of thousands of interests. I was contacted by a local TV station to do an on-air interview about the site, but unfortunately I was flying to Atlanta that day and was in the air when I got the call. Either way I knew I had something here.
A few days later a copycat site called WeFollow came out. It was then that I realized a critical flaw that I made: I did not require people to tweet out that they just joined Tweeple Pages... WeFollow did. Although I missed out on thousands of new users, I was still keeping up with WeFollow, which was started by Digg founder Kevin Rose. Unfortunately in the end WeFollow won and I chalked Tweeple Pages up as a cool idea that almost made it. More recently Twitter has added Browse Interests to their Who to follow section of their site. I always have and continue to believe that connecting with people based on shared interests is the best way to meet new people.
My name is James Shiner and I'm a PHP developer, internet marketer and serial entrepreneur who also loves speaking, teaching, writing and consulting. I have a passion for social media and basically anything related to the Internet and technology.
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