It was via a referrer link on a post on the Open Culture blog that I came across the Topsy service (isn’t serendipity wonderful). This service describes itself as “A search engine powered by tweets“.

Here’s an illustration of the service, using a search for ‘JISC’.

Topsy search for jisc

Of course the first thing you are often tempted to do when you see a search box is to type in something of interest to yourself and, if the service seems of interest, you might also search for information about one’s peers. So here’s a summary of my findings.

Search Nos. of tweets in month Top Twitterer
JISC 563 tweets @jisc (14 links).
UKOLN 164 tweets @briankelly (17 links).
CETIS 242 tweets @markpower (11 links).
Eduserv 184 tweets @andypowe11 (18 links).
MIMAS 423 tweets @copac (9 links)
EDINA 140 tweets @freelistminn (27 links).

I believe the information is based on the search pharmacy online with no prescriptions string, either as text or as part of a URL in a link (following expansion of a shortened link).  Note, by the way, that as the first set of results for ‘EDINA’ refer to a place in the US rather than the JISC-funded service, the findings for EDINA have been discounted.

This time using the MIMAS service as an example I have explored what additional information  the service can provide. A screen shot of information on tweets which provide a link to the MIMAS home page is illustrated.

topsy-mimas-20091102

It seems that the relaunched MIMAS Web site was mentioned on Twitter, not only by MIMAS staff but also by ‘influential’ Twitterers such as @branwenhide .