The Feeling’s Mutual: the Twitter-related API I’ve Been Wanting

Adam DuVander, March 17th, 2010

IntersectSo and So is now following you on Twitter. Who? How did they find me? Why might I want to follow back? That’s been a common bit of internal dialogue for me lately. Often the answer lies in our mutual friends or followers. Social networks like LinkedIn and Facebook make this easy. Not so with Twitter, which is why I was excited to find Intersect.

From a user standpoint, it’s a Google Chrome extension (Firefox apparently coming soon) that inserts a “mutual friends” and “mutual followers” section to profile pages on Twitter.com. You can see an example in the video embedded below.

More exciting than the Intersect browser extension is the underlying data–and the API that is behind it (our Intersect API profile). It’s not as official as some APIs, but it’s documented on the GitHub repository. It is also open source (MIT license), so you could run your own version of the service. .

The next step that would like to see is for Twitter app developers to incorporate it. Twimailer, the improved new follower email service, could let me know when we follow the same people. Twitter clients, such as my iPhone’s Tweetie, could add it to the services menu.

There are already a few mashups that will give me mutual Twitter friends and followers. OMGFriends is one. MashedIn shows Twitter, as well as Facebook and LinkedIn. But now that there’s an API, it would be great to see that functionality added to the places where I am more likely to act on the information.

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7 Responses to “The Feeling’s Mutual: the Twitter-related API I’ve Been Wanting”

March 17th, 2010
at 1:27 am
Comment by: Abraham Williams

Thanks for the write up. With some of the new APIs Twitter is coming out with I’m working on increasing the limit to more then 5000.

March 17th, 2010
at 1:31 am
Comment by: Abraham Williams

Twimailer is fun but I still prefer: http://topify.com/

March 17th, 2010
at 12:20 pm
Comment by: Ted DRAKE

I started playing around with Yahoo! BOSS to see if I could take those mutual followers and explore their foaf to get more relationships. It could lead to some interesting discoveries.

March 17th, 2010
at 6:39 pm
Comment by: Abraham Williams

Google’s Social Graph API would be a good way of pulling in more info: http://code.google.com/apis/socialgraph/

March 18th, 2010
at 1:07 pm
Comment by: Ian Irving

I built something very simmilar for FireFox (and soon Chrome) using the GreaseMonkey extension : Follow Rank and Follows in Common for Twitter User Profiles http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/64286

March 21st, 2010
at 7:01 pm
Comment by: 5 New APIs: OneLogin, Animoto, ActiveCampaign, Buxter and Intersect

[...] to transfer money over Facebook, and the service we wrote about earlier this week that to help you find mutual Twitter followers. Here are more details on each of these new [...]

April 7th, 2010
at 12:41 am
Comment by: How Twitter’s 1 API Gave Birth to 43 New APIs

[...] written about some of these before, such as the mutual friends API and profile search API. We also noted data re-sharing as a Twitter API best practice in Twitter [...]

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Adam DuVander
Executive Editor, ProgrammableWeb. Author, Map Scripting 101. Lover, APIs.