Funny story, as I started writing this post I tried to go to Twitter and guess what, Fail Whale. You can't make this stuff up.
Yes, the Fail Whale is irritating, but Twitter is the best thing to happen to the web in a long time. In fact it got me interested in the Web, when for a long time I had no interest in anything other than reading the news and mindlessly perusing the top stories on Digg.
Not that I "got" Twitter at first, in first actual tweet was on May 6th of 2008, but I signed up in July of 2007 to utilize a web service that interfaced with Twitter. Then Twitter got big, at least around the tech world. For a while it was all you heard about, so I decided that maybe using Twitter would be a good idea. So I started following some of the more prominent twitterers. Suddenly I started so see the usefulness of Twitter along with the fun in Twitter.
How cool was it that I could sms a message to Twitter and get an answer from the cloud, of course for this to work I had to build my network. To build my network I had to make some connections, so I started using Twitter on a weekly, then daily, and then sometimes hourly basis. Sometimes it was to post link I found interesting, other times pointless observations, or maybe to microblog a Twins game.
So my network started to grow, I now have 33 followers, and have updated almost 200 times. The funny thing is that as I started using Twitter I found it easier to blog, and then I started to participate in online discussion more frequently. One thing led to another and soon I'm participating in the web instead of just observering. And it all started with a simple service that let you post short messages. Now I participate in numerous networks including Linkedin, Digg, Flickr, and Facebook. I hope someday this pays off in some useful way, but for now I am glad I'm actually participating instead of just consuming content.