Twitter Question Feeds for Stack Exchange

by Jeff Atwood

on January 12, 2011

If you ever listened to our sadly defunct podcast, you probably heard about Twitter ... a lot. I've been a longtime user (since 2007) and I was always surprised how much utility I got out of the thing. Even Joel Spolsky, a longtime skeptic of the service, is a believer now.

We decided to create Twitter accounts for each Stack Exchange 2.0 site that will broadcast interesting questions every so often. Believe me -- I despise spam as much as anyone, and I fully realize that Twitter is not RSS ...

Stop spamming Twitter with auto-generated tweets saying nothing more than that you posted something somewhere else.

... but the fact is that a lot of questions generated on our sites are really quite interesting. The more people that discover our high quality Q&A; and join us -- the better the community becomes for everyone!

With that in mind, we've set up the following Twitter accounts to publish the most interesting content on each Stack Exchange site every three hours -- without ever repeating themselves.

Stack Exchange site Twitter account
Android StackAndroid
Apple StackApple
StackApps StackApps
Audio Recording & Production StackAudio
Bicycles StackBicycles
Board and Card Games StackBoardGames
Cooking StackCooking
CS Theory StackCSTheory
Home Improvement StackDIY
English Language & Usage StackEnglish
Database Administrators StackDBAs
Personal Finance and Money StackFinance
Game Development StackGameDev
Gaming StackGaming
GIS StackGIS
Homebrewing StackHomebrew
Mathematics StackMath
OnStartups Answers StackOnStartups
Photography StackPhotos
Physics StackPhysics
Programmers StackProgrammer
Electronics and Robotics StackRobots
Role-Playing Games StackRPG
IT Security StackSecurity
Statistics StackStats
TeX StackTex
User Interface StackUI
Ask Ubuntu StackUbuntu
Unix and Linux StackUnix
Web Applications StackWebApps
Pro Webmasters StackWebmasters
WordPress StackWordPress
Writers StackWriters

As of June 2011, the authoritative list of sites and Twitter accounts will always be at the official stackexchange.com/sites directory. Just look for the little Twitter icons next to each site.

Although it's always possible to subscribe to a site's questions through the copious RSS feeds we provide on every page -- and also via email -- I guess you can consider Twitter "RSS for the casual internet user". We'll try to feature the Twitter accounts on each site in some unobtrusive way, so people have another way to follow the stream of Q&A; from a given site topic without being overwhelmed by it.

We also plan to get our master Stack Exchange twitter account hooked up and broadcasting a sampling of the best questions network-wide, just like the stackexchange.com homepage already does. This is now working, so if you want the "greatest hits" questions across the entire network, follow this user:

twitter.com/stackexchange

(Also, a special thanks to community member George Edison who put together a great Twitter 'bot sample app in Mono for us to use as a reference -- you can view his source code at quickmediasolutions.com/stackbot and contribute to it as you see fit!)