The second-most popular API in our directory has revamped its developer site and announced some incredible numbers. Microblogging service Twitter says it has more than 1,000,000 registered apps from three-quarters of a million developers. After a year when it’s been unclear how important developers are to Twitter, this new site is perhaps an olive branch to its huge community. The new site for those developers includes its own API blog, on-site discussions and enhanced app management.
The announcement post is the first on the new Twitter blog and details the new aspects of the dev site. Perhaps the most notable change is a real forum, moving beyond the Google Group that has lasted until now:
We need a place to talk with each other that gives us more functionality than we have now. So, it’s time to move away from the mailing list. In the new discussions section, you’ll find “Hot Topics” for the most popular conversations. And you can subscribe to the categories and threads that interest you most. Lastly, we created a “Dev Teatime” section to focus on a more social side of the community. We hope to get to know more of you through this feature, so please check it out.
In addition to moving away from a mailing list, the forums are now separated into topic sections. There is one for each API type (REST, Streaming and website), as well as specific types of developer questions: authentication, policies and feedback. Developers also have a place for socialization in “Developer Teatime.”
Twitter didn’t even have a developer website at all until dev.twitter.com launched at Chirp a little over a year ago. Since its big unveiling, the site hasn’t had much attention until the most recent announcement.
The app management tool gives some insight into how developers reached 1,000,000 applications. All that is required is a few pieces of information, such as a title and description of your app. The process is required even for some simple applications, such as those that put Twitter buttons on websites, as Frederic Lardinois pointed out on Google+.
Last month Twitter surpassed Flickr in terms of mashups on ProgrammableWeb. There’s also Twitter’s other ecosystem, APIs derived from Twitter’s data, which have doubled in the last year, now numbering 90 Twitter-based APIs.