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Twitter Tuesday - Tweetie 2 for Mac is coming, and it'll be free and unofficial

So, we've seen Twitter for iPhone, Twitter for iPad, and a new Twitter Web interface. Where's our Tweetie for Mac update? Twitter is finally releasing some details about what developer Loren Brichter -- hired by the big T to revamp Tweetie into Twitter for iPhone and create the official iPad app-- is doing with Tweetie for Mac.

Here's the deal: Tweetie for Mac won't become an official Twitter client. After all, Twitter just went through the biggest revision ever to its Web interface, making it look an awful lot like Mr. Brichter's iPad app, and they want desktop users to flock to that new website. So, Tweetie is just a side project for Loren, still developed under the banner of his still-sort-of-existent software company, Atebits. He won't be making any dough on it, though, because (according to Twitter), it's going to be made free.

That's good news for everyone except folks who bought the Mac software discount bundle MacHeist on the promise that they'd be let into an early Tweetie 2 beta and given free licenses for the new version of the app. Well, they'll still be getting free licenses ... but so will everyone else who wants to use Tweetie 2.

Tweet Nest is is a handy, self-hosted Twitter archive

Tweet Nest
is one of the most valuable third-party Twitter apps to come along in ages, because it does something Twitter hasn't offered yet: backing up all your old tweets and making them searchable. The plus side is that it's free, and it works exactly the way you expect it to. The downside is that you have to have to host it yourself using PHP and MySQL. It's not hard to do, but it's an additional step that might put off people who don't have access to a server or shared environment to set it up. Our own Jason Clarke has more details on Tweet Nest in an earlier post.

Twitter update adds a host of keyboard shortcuts

One of the best features of the new Twitter user interface -- for those lucky enough to have it already -- is keyboard shortcuts. The Gmail-like key combos let you navigate the site more quickly, including jumping to any user's profile. Lifehacker has rounded up the list of shortcuts, for the keyboard-inclined amongst us.

"Who to Follow" improves, Twitter recommendations appear on Bing searches

Twitter's "Who to Follow" recommendation feature just got a lot better, because it now keeps track of the recommended users you repeatedly ignore, and stops showing them to you. The result: much less repetitive, much more useful bunches of users to follow. MG Siegler at TechCrunch offers bounteous praise for the Twitter team behind the improvements, and notes that his personal follower numbers have zoomed upward since they were introduced.

Speaking of Twitter recommendations, you may have noticed some Twitter users popping up alongside your Microsoft Bing search results. Bing now includes a "recommended users on Twitter" box, showing people who might be related to your search. It's not going to go as deep as Twitter's recommendations -- mainly sticking to verified celebs and companies -- but it's just the tip of the iceberg for what Bing could do with Twitter and search if they decided to take things in a more social direction.

Itsy is a slick, minimalist desktop Twitter app for Mac

If you're looking for an alternative to the stagnant Mac version of Tweetie, you might consider a neat little app called Itsy. It's not big on features, but it's got a clean, elegant interface that doesn't take up a lot of screen real estate. How itsy-bitsy is Itsy? Well, the screenshot I've included here is actual size.

Despite its tiny size, Itsy has a few power features like inline image display, optional Growl notifications, and one-click URL shrinking. My only (minor) complaint is that the keyboard shortcuts aren't as effective as I'd like. Hey, Itsy developers: can you make the direct message hotkey automatically fill in the author of the currently selected tweet?

And that's this week's Twitter Tuesday! Pop back in next week for more news and apps from the world of Twitter.

Tags: features, itsy, tweetie 2, tweetie for mac, Tweetie2, TweetieForMac, twitter, twitter tuesday, TwitterTuesday