The rapid explosion in the popularity of Twitter has resulted in a plethora of desktop Twitter clients being available. However, there is one client, Histwi, which claims to be different from the rest. Instead of being a Twitter client, Histwi is called a Twitter account management client. How different is it actually from a normal Twitter client? We will come to that later. But first the installation.
If you are using Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala, it is quite easy to install Histwi. Here is what you need to do to install Histwi in Karmic Koala:
- Open the terminal.
- Add the PPA with the command:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nikolay-blohin/histwi
- Update your software list with the command:
sudo apt-get update
- Finally, install it with the command
sudo apt-get install histwi
If you are using another version of Ubuntu or another distro, you can download the .deb file or the source file from gtk-apps.org.
I use Ubuntu 9.10, so my installation was smooth and problem free. After installation, Histwi can be found in Applications -> Internet in GNOME or KickOff -> Applications -> Internet in KDE SC.
This is what you get just after you start it, before any configuration. As you can see, “Add User”, “Delete User”, “Sync User” are given a very prominent place where it is very visible.
Clicking on “Add User” brings up a dialog where you have to enter your Twitter username and password to get started. Upto this point, it is a breeze. There is no need to go to Settings, Configuration menu etc to look add your Twitter account.
After you have entered your Twitter details, Histwi downloads your Tweets. This is where it gets irritating. It took a good 20-25 minutes to download my tweets. However, I found out that this is where the first difference between a simple Twitter client and a Twitter account manager comes up. Since Histwi is a Twitter account manager, it downloads all the of your tweets unlike Twitter clients which needs to download just the latest few tweets. Another difference is that unlike Twitter clients, it does not download the tweets of those you follow.
After, all your Tweets have been downloaded, you can see your all your tweets ever by clicking on “Tweets”. You can save your tweets as a text file or a html file (although I cannot come up with any reason why anyone would want to do that).
Clicking on “Friends” brings up the list of people you follow and those who follows you. You can follow or unfollow people from this window. In this window, you can also see the number of people whom
- you follow but doesn’t follow you
- you follow and in turns follows you
- you don’t follow but follows you
I sure would love to know who are the people in the various groups as mentioned above. However, Histwi does not provide any way to see who are the people in the various categories mentioned above.
The search is however, one feature that I am very impressed with. It provides a number of search parameters which results it in being a very powerful search tool. And the best part is that it searches the public timeline, not your followers timeline.
This is the search result, I got when I searched for “tegan and sara” as “All of these words”. Quite impressive I must say.
What I Liked
- Powerful and versatile search. This can be real useful when you are searching for something specific.
- Easy and simple interface. The interface is such that even a newbie can jump right in and start using it right away without any peoblem.
What I Disliked
- The whole concept behind the app. I cannot understand why anyone would want to have an app which he can only only use to manage his Twitter account. Unless it is someone who has a number of Twitter accounts, I do not see any real use for this app.
- No Tweet and no friends timeline. Right now the app does not have any way to post tweets and we cannot see our friends timeline.