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David Talbot

A View from David Talbot

Twitter Piques with Peek Tweak

Latest in line of Internet appliances: a gadget built for tweeting.

  • November 11, 2009
Twitter Peek Credit: Peek.

Who needs Internet-connected PCs these days? We have iPods for music. E-readers and Kindles for downloading and reading books. TiVos for managing television shows. And now, we have a gadget built for Tweeting.

To a certain extent, the logic behind its creation is understandable. As popular as Twitter is, only a small percentage of people use mobile phones for sending those 140-character blasts, called Tweets. So a few months ago, Twitter asked Peek–which already made an email-only product, called the Peek Pronto—to make a Twitter-only device. So now we have a Twitter Peek—basically the same gizmo but with an interface tweaked for Twitter. At $99 with six months of service included, or $199 with lifetime service, it’s pricey.

But it’s main significance is in administering another small blow toward the continued fracturing of how we access and use the Internet. Why does that matter? Take a look at this Mozilla-made video we posted a few months ago. Face-recognition software finds faces in the video, identifies who they are, and then displays their Tweets inside thought-bubbles over their heads. Pretty cool. It’s the kind of unexpected creative stuff made possible by the synergy of powerful computing and the open Internet–and that isn’t possible when people use one-task-only Internet gadgets such as the Twitter Peek.

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