Once you have a following on Twitter, it’s easy to gather a little extra traffic to your site from it. To help automate the process, I make use of Twitter’s API and a Linux command line. I create some cron jobs to update my status using curl. This is pretty simple to do and may be helpful for people with a Linux box and the need to advertise something.
The curl command is structured as follows:
curl -u username:password -d status="My new status message" http://twitter.com/statuses/update.xml
Now it’s important to note that for the automated crons the returned xml isn’t really needed. You can also use this in the programming language of choice to fetch the xml and make use of it. You can also get JSON results by changing the end from .xml to .json.
So, once you have the code, all you have to do is create the cron jobs in Linux. Edit the crontab with
Your default editor should open your cron. Here is an example showing how to create the cron job:
5 * * * * curl -username:password -d status="My Message" http://twitter.com/statuses/update.xml
That cron job would run at 5 minutes after the hour, every hour, every day. This is, however, not a good idea because your account will not last long 🙂