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Twitter enables embedded timelines

Twitter has launched a new tool that enables you to embed interactive timelines on any website. According to the company, the tool provides the means to place any public timeline on any page. "With one line of HTML you can deliver any account's tweets, favourites, a list, search query or hashtag directly to your website," explained Twitter's Sylvain Carle.

The timelines work much like the Twitter website, providing the means for visitors to reply, retweet, follow and tweet directly, but without leaving the page. Tweets can be expanded and flagged as favourites, and Carle claimed the new tools were built specifically for the web and that they "load fast, scale with your traffic as your audience grows, update in real-time, and work great in modern, legacy, and mobile browsers".

"I like that it adds functionality over latest tweets," freelance web designer Shane Hudson told .net. But he added that "it is unlikely to fit in with many website designs". (Presumably this is Twitter's intention, given its recent blitz on third parties and attempts to create a 'consistent user experience'.) Digital consultant Michael Oglesby had other concerns, wondering if it could lead to more spam on the service. "My gut tells me we'll see more spammers and bots hijacking Twitter timelines," he said, "because it's easier to submit a reply tweet via the widget. It won't be long before someone figures out a way to sniff out websites that have this new widget and automatically submit tweets to your timeline."