A Good Hobby for Techies

My friend Kevin is amazing.  I admire his ability to maintain hobbies outside of work and even his family life.  He enjoys Civil War community groups, golf and gardening. All of these keep him balanced and his outlook is remarkably positive.

I've developed a new hobby of my own since Twitter has come online: saved searches. First I'll tell you why I like saved searches and then I'll tell you how to do it for yourself.

Why saved searches?  Saved searches allow you to scan the conversations on Twitter and identify anything that matches your search.  For example, I've been saddened by the latest news about Fr. John Corapi and the poor choices that he's made in the last few years.  Twitter has allowed me to stay up to speed on updates and accurate news about him.

Saved searches also allow you to join in on the conversation.  I've been able to help people with questions about technology and with others, entered into meaningful dialogue about the faith.  These small bits of communication go a long way.

How do you create saved searches?

Step one is to open up Twitter.  I use the official Twitter app for my iPhone and iPad.  When I'm on my desktop, I might also use TweetDeck because it allows for an easy pull of multiple different accounts.

This morning's Twitter feed looks like this:











From here I click on the magnifying glass and type in a search keyword.  In this case, my keyword is Wunderlist, a productivity app that I want to learn more about:











From there, you can follow someone's link to a recommended article or simply reply to someone's point of view.  I also use Instapaper to batch my reading items for a later time.

Right now, my saved search list looks like the following and I check it about once a day:










The lower three items are what's trending on a given day in Twitter.

How are you using Twitter to follow important information that's of interest in your life?