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Archive for July, 2013

I have this tiny app on an Ec2 micro instance. It uses the Twitter API, via the Twitter4J Java client library, to record the number of followers for a given list of Twitter handles. I’ve cronned it to run once a day, so for each of the Twitter accounts I’m interested in, for example my bots, I have a CSV file that tracks the number of followers over time. Simple, crude, and good enough.

A friend asked me if I would do the same for his Twitter account. “No problem”, I said, because, you know, I’m generous like that. Add it to the list, CSV file magically appears the next day, and Bob’s yer uncle. Every once in a while I would email him an up-to-date copy of that file, that analytical masterpiece, that source of valuable “Business Information”, and he’d plot it as a graph in Excel, or whatever it is he does with it.

Keegan's wisdom

This arrangement was fine for a couple of weeks, but it soon became clear it would be better for both of us if he had direct access to his data so we could do away with this bothersome emailing business altogether. So, how to do that? Call me skittish, but I’m not mad keen on granting SSH access to any old Tom, Dick or Harry, personal friend or no. And in any case, I’m sure he’d find SCP a little bit of a faff. How about good old HTTP?

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