Multimap Twitterbot

21 June 2007

A few people at Hackday presented hacks that use Twitter’s direct messaging API to interface with a third party Web Service. By far the coolest one was Colm and Richard’s that allows you to request data from eBay and Wikipedia as well as a host of useful information such as nearest cashpoints, cinemas, tubes, restaurants and many others.

Want an example? How about being able to text to Twitter closest atm from ec4a2dy, and get back a set of walking instructions for finding the nearest cashpoint. Pretty handy I would argue.

Want to know if there’s anything interesting round about? Try sending closest wikipedia from rome, italy and that should keep you going for a bit.


The hackday bot (not currently available for public use) uses Yahoo!’s FireEagle service to find out your current location so that you don’t have to send it to Twitter every time. This means if you can set up your GPS device or mobile to ping FireEagle your location every minute or so, you’ll never have to worry about where you are and what is around you again. You’ll simply text to closest pub, FireEagle will know where you are, let Multimap know so they can query their local information database and Twitter will send you back what you need. This is pretty astounding really, and I don’t know of another service right now that can offer quite the same kind of thing.

In my opinion FireEagle has some serious implications for the way location based services are going to work in the future, and I think what the guys built at hackday is an early prototype of what may be round the corner.

For added comedy value they also created a spoof iPhone ad to show off the Twitterbot in action. Is there no end to their creative genius?