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May 21, 2013

Why Twitter Owes Its Existance To Two Way Radios?

Twitter and the Two Way RadioDid you know that Twitter owes its existence to two way radios? Honest!

Surprised? Shocked? Don’t be – this is 100% true. It is a fact that radio systems have inspired the creation of Twitter.

I bet that you still don’t believe this and are probably laughing out loud at my claim. You’re probably wondering that how could a boring technology that’s been in existence since the last 80 years inspire a social networking website that’s grown into a raging hit. You are probably asking: How can a Rip Van Winkle ever inspire a Justin Bieber to stardom?

So, the right thing to do is to clear your doubts. Listen to this story:

Jack Dorsey, one of the co-founders of Twitter, was a fan of two way radio technology since his childhood (in St. Louis, Missouri). He loved listening to the radio communications on a scanner. Jack would get his kicks listening to what the emergency services department had to communicate. He was fascinated about how things worked in the real world, and it is this radio communication that Jack has transitioned into the virtual world in the form of Twitter. Jack has admitted this on 60 Minutes, a popular show.

What Actually Inspired Jack To Create Twitter?

Jack was always struck by the fact that everyone communicating on a radio system spoke very crisply and clearly, and the communication was short and sweet. Many conversations would be in code, but nevertheless, even coded conversations would be clear and instantly decipherable.

Jack was also struck by the fact that people using radio systems always spoke about:

(a) What they were doing.
(b) Where they were going.
(c) What they are currently doing.
(d) What they were planning to do in the near future.
(e) What were their feelings.
(f) What are their intentions.
(g) How do they feel about a certain thing or event

All these factors got into Jack’s gray matter and the idea of Twitter was born.

Today, Twitter is just like a global online radio system, except that it is not restricted. You can write about anything for the whole world to see and comment. Of course, you cannot strictly compare it with a physical radio system – that would be asinine.

Like two way radios, it is easy to use. It is easy to join, simple to use, it can be automated, and most of all, it is democratic. Plus, with smartphones around, you can post all the information listed above at anytime. Finally, like radio communication, all the posts uploaded on Twitter are crisp, clear and short (140 characters, and no more).

What’s Next After Twitter?

There’s no stopping Jack now. Radios inspired him to create Twitter and the Twitter-smartphone revolution has inspired him to create Square, which will enables wireless credit card payments across all platforms (android, iOS, etc.). Jack also wants to become Mayor of New York.

This is how radio systems have played a role in the creation of Twitter.


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