Don’t Thank Me

Those Winter Sundays | Poet Robert Hayden
In the first stanza of Robert Hayden’s poem, “Those Winter Sundays,” the son/narrator describes the ritual of his father on a cold, Sunday morning:

Sundays too my father got up early
and put his clothes on in the blueblack cold,
then with cracked hands that ached
from labor in the weekday weather made
banked fires blaze. No one ever thanked him.

While in bed last night, thinking of what to write about for my Thirty Days of Thanks blog post, I immediately thought of my own father and his rituals. Those humid weekday mornings in Houston, where he manicured lawns with weed whackers, tamed the electric snarl of table saws, drowned wasp nests with slithering water hoses. He worked nights but never rested when he got home. He would stay dressed in his cracked maintenance uniform, his fingers stained with grease, his thinning hair sitting heavy on his head. He would find work to do, he would move through the house like a bear blustering with hunger before heading to bed and his snoring collapsed walls.

I would sometimes watch him and wonder why he needed to work so hard, needed to work all the time. Like in “Those Winter Sundays” no one ever thanked him. I don’t think he ever expected us to. But I watched him always, learning from the serenade of his hands, memorizing the callous melody of hard work. It is because of him I now work with a company that I love, work with coworkers and clients that I respect and that respect me. It was a long road to get here but I never quit, I kept pushing and earning my way.

I know that one day I will have my own family that won’t thank me either. Who won’t know of “love’s austere and lonely offices” and that’s fine. I think my father would prefer it that way and honestly, I do too.

A Bigger, Badder Twitter

New Twitter Design Interface

In an effort to lure users back to their site and away from 3rd party clients, Twitter is rolling out a slew of new features. The most important feature of the #NewTwitter will allow users to embed videos, photos and other multimedia directly into their streams.  Followers will now be able to view these media-rich tweets without having to click on any external links. Instead they will access video, photos and live streaming content from the Twitter interface.

The new UI (user interface) uses a two panel design that allows users to view their feed on the left and media content on the right. If the design looks familiar don’t be surprised. It is essentially the same design as the Twitter Ipad app.

This new design will allow users to integrate multimedia far more easily in their tweeting experience. The #NewTwitter has essentially taken the best features of 3rd party clients like Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, and Seesmic and combined them.  Here is a list of some of the new features:

  • Streamlined user interface w/ tabs
  • Ability to view photos, videos and other media content without clicking a link
  • Access to mini profiles
  • Access to meta data: location, number of mentions, @ replies, etc
  • Access to keyboard shortcuts similar to Gmail

UPDATE: Twitter will launch a free real-time analytics dashboard later this year.

If all these features sound great to you, you will probably have to wait to use them. Twitter is rolling out these changes over the next several weeks. In the meantime, check out this video showcasing the new Twitter design and features.

I don’t know about you but I am perfectly happy with my 3rd party app. I have been using Hootsuite for over a year now and I love it. I can manage several accounts, assign users, view multiple streams, review account analytics, schedule tweets, attached files, images and watch video directly in the stream. Most importantly, I can access Hootsuite from any web browser.  I wonder what took Twitter so long to adopt these basic functions to their site.

Don’t get me wrong, once I’ve been upgraded to the new version, I’ll give it a go but something tells me that I will return to my beloved twitter app.  How about you? Which twitter apps do you use and will you abandon them for the new twitter? Let us know in the comments.