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Update 12/2009: Twitter's changed things around since I first made this post.  Now, prefer the home_timeline.rss instead of friends_timeline.rss if you want retweets included.  Also, "mentions" are no longer included in the home_timeline or friends_timeline.  So you'll have to make a similar "Fetch Feed" hierarchy for mentions.rss, and use the Union filter to take both feeds and join them together.

Yahoo Pipes can also be used for feed authentication (like Twitter Friend feeds). You could embed the username and password directly into the URL (in which case, everybody can see them), or you can hide them within a private string object, like this.

With a feed like that (with your own username and password), you can view your friends feed from Google Reader.

Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
jasontromm
Sep. 16th, 2008 09:08 pm (UTC)
It Works!
Thanks Dave. Worked like a charm! Now I can catch up with my friends tweets at my own pace.
(Anonymous)
Oct. 16th, 2008 10:08 am (UTC)
Thanks!
Really helpful - thanks David!
bookmarc.myopenid.com
Oct. 30th, 2008 07:51 pm (UTC)
Solution for more frequent updates?
This technique is totally awesome: it works!

Unfortunately, Google Reader checks my Twitter Pipes feed every 3 hours. Is there a way to get Google Reader to check it every 15 minutes?
dblume
Oct. 30th, 2008 08:05 pm (UTC)
Re: Solution for more frequent updates?
Not that I know of.

Keep in mind that you also have to deal with the delay on Yahoo's end, too. It's a long pipeline from the original tweet to your eyes. For example:

Friend tweets at 01:00
Yahoo runs the pipe to check the private friends feed at the next regular interval, say 03:00, and updates its public feed.
Google Reader checks that public feed at its next regular interval, say 05:00.
You check Google Reader when you get around to it, say at 07:00.

I don't know what the actual numbers would be on average. If you got really lucky, it'd be something more like this:

Friend tweets at 01:00
Yahoo runs the pipe to check the private friends feed at the next regular interval, say 01:01, and updates its public feed.
Google Reader checks that public feed at its next regular interval, say 01:02.
You check Google Reader when you get around to it, say at 01:03.

You can take full control of making the feed public if you do it yourself with something like curl. Here's an example of the CURL way.

Edited at 2008-10-30 08:09 pm (UTC)
bookmarc.myopenid.com
Oct. 30th, 2008 09:25 pm (UTC)
Re: Solution for more frequent updates?
I'm trying it both from my own server and through Yahoo Pipes. Both are working to pull the feed correctly. I have my cron job on my server pull the feed every 15 minutes, while the Pipes pulls it every hour or so.

Unfortunately, Google Reader is pulling both feeds at 3 hour intervals, which is just too long! I found this article describing how I can ping Google Blogsearch to notify that my feed is ready, but I'm unsure if it's having any effect to increase the frequency of GR updating my server's and Pipes' tweet feed.

Here (at the bottom of the post):
http://www.bolinfest.com/changeblog/2007/12/14/get-all-your-tweets-in-google-reader/

and here:
http://www.google.com/help/blogsearch/pinging_API.html

Just wondering if you or anyone else knows if pinging is supposed to increase the frequency of GR pulling specific feeds.
(Anonymous)
Nov. 8th, 2008 02:45 am (UTC)
Re: Solution for more frequent updates?
I found a solution! If you have another Google account, simply use that alternate account's Google Reader service to subscribe to the authenticated feed. My feed are coming in less than an hour now!
(Anonymous)
Sep. 11th, 2009 08:26 am (UTC)
Re: Solution for more frequent updates?
Thanks for the explanation.

Has the situation changed in the past year? Is it now possible to subscribe to my friend's timeline and not miss any tweets (due to more often updates - e.g. every 15 minutes)
datavortex
Jan. 19th, 2009 03:05 pm (UTC)
Thanks, this is really handy.
unloveable
Jan. 28th, 2009 05:21 am (UTC)
Thank you for this. One question, though: can Yahoo Pipes authenticate over SSL? E.g., https://username:password@twitter.com/statuses/friends_timeline.rss ... I get a "problem parsing response" error when I try.

Or do you just have to trust that Yahoo's connection to Twitter (or any other service requiring authentication) is reasonably secure?
dblume
Jan. 28th, 2009 04:28 pm (UTC)
In the end, I'm not using the pipes solution, I'm simply running curl in a cron job. I don't know the answer to your question.

If you figure it out, will you post what you discover in a reply?

FWIW, if I need SSL to protect data, I wouldn't give the data to Yahoo pipes to store on their disk in the first place.
(Anonymous)
Apr. 25th, 2009 07:04 pm (UTC)
Thanks!
This worked so well, thank you for sharing!
(Anonymous)
May. 1st, 2009 04:49 pm (UTC)
compromises your password
Unfortunately, this technique uses "basic authentication", which sends your password over the Internet in easily reversible base64 encoding. This would be ok if the session were encrypted (https), but pipes doesn't support it at this time.
seotoday
Mar. 4th, 2010 02:50 pm (UTC)
cool i will embed it in my blog

thanks
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )