For the past several weeks, plenty of my friends have had the new Twitter interface featuring both Search and Trending Topics on the main page, but I had yet to see it. Today, I log in to see that I’m finally special enough to get it as well — only to learn that it’s now officially been rolled out to everyone.
Say hello to the new Twitter.com, it’s a lot like the old one, but with the two important features. Search works great because it’s all done on the page without any reloads. And perhaps the most useful feature is that you can save searches that you do over and over again. Also included in the right hand sidebar is Trending Topics, which keeps track of the hot items people are searching for across Twitter. Not surprisingly, right now Swine Flu takes up the top two spots, with Mexico a little below it.
As Twitter co-founder Biz Stone writes, “Every public update sent to Twitter from anywhere in the world 24/7 can be instantly indexed and made discoverable via our newly launched real-time search.” And he goes on, “With this newly launched feature, Twitter has become something unexpectedly important—a discovery engine for finding out what is happening right now.” Some of us have been saying that for months, if not years, of course, but Stone is right that with Search and Trending Topics now right on the main page, both are more powerful than they’ve ever been.
And it all looks exactly as it should. It keeps Twitter simple, while adding some very key features. And if you don’t like the way they look, you can collapse them for a more traditional, minimal Twitter look.
I wonder if this will affect some of the third party Twitter clients that have been built? After all, these are two core features that people wanted on the site, and now they have them. I know I’ll be tempted to use the site itself even more now. And that’s something Twitter would no doubt be happy with — especially if it keeps putting new sponsored links in the upper part of the right sidebar.
Now if only there were a way to group users together and/or filter them on the site…