Tweeting in Linux part II: Twitux v. Twhirl
We're always on the lookout for good desktop Twitter clients. Because while the microblogging service is kind of useful as a web-based tool for sharing your thoughts, desktop clients make Twitter feel more like an instant messaging platform that allows you to communicate with hundreds, even thousands of people at once.
While there are a couple of excellent Twitter clients for Windows and OS X, Linux users have had a more limited selection. A few months ago we looked at gTwitter, an application for reading and sending Tweets from your Linux desktop. While gTwitter will get the job done, it lacks some of the features we use the most, like URL shortening and the ability to reply to tweets from other users with the click of a button.
So we were pretty excited when we read about Twitux, another Twitter client designed for Linux. Installation couldn't have been easier. We downloaded a deb file for Ubuntu, and our system automatically downloaded all the required dependencies and instlled Twtiux. And then we saw that it was almost as basic as gTwitter. Twitux gives you more control over your timeline view, allowing you to see the public timeline, your friends timeline, your own timeline, direct messages, or replies. But if you want to send a reply or direct message you'll have to do it manually. There's no option to click on a friends' name in the timeline and respond.
Fortunately, now that Adobe has released a version of their AIR platform for Linux, you can run popular AIR-based Twitter clients like Spaz and Twhirl, So while we're still kind of hoping that someone will develop a full-featured Twitter client that runs natively in Linux, we'll happily settle for the cross-platform Twhirl client. A new version of Twhirl was released this week with a few bug fixes and one major new feature: support for Friendfeed discussions.