we want plates
we want plates

8 Decidedly Different Twitter Feeds

we want plates
we want plates

Twitter is a social network and microblogging platform that lends itself to some imaginative purposes besides communication. A Twitter account can be a single-subject blog or a single joke. It can be an experiment in what software can do, or what people will believe. It can be a medium for social protest. It can even be a webcomic site. Here are some strange and different Twitter feeds that you might get a laugh out of once, or you might want to follow long-term.


Humans have a tendency to perceive patterns in seemingly random data. That’s our brains making sense of the world, and we tend to see human faces more than anything else. This phenomenon is called pareidolia. The Twitter account Faces in Things gives us example after example. All you need are two dots, circles, or really any two things for eyes, and maybe a shape for a mouth, and we can even see expressions in those shapes.


Disneyland is home to an extensive colony of feral cats. They stay mostly hidden during the day, and come out at night to prowl the premises. Park staff tend to the cats by feeding, neutering, and providing veterinary services when needed, and the cats return the favor by keeping rodents away from the park. Spotting one of the cats is a treat for visitors, but they can also follow the cats on Twitter at Cats of Disneyland. The tweets are cat-centric, and usually pretty funny. There are also plenty of contributions of pictures from visitors who spotted a cat at Disneyland. The Twitter feed was created to support the blog of the same name, but the Twitter feed is much more active.


We hear ominous warnings about the rise of artificial intelligence, but then we see real experiments that show we have quite a way to go before Skynet takes over. INTERESTING.JPG is an experimental Twitter feed generated by artificial intelligence. An AI software program was trained in photo captioning by having it analyze photographs with human-written captions. On Twitter, it tries to caption news photographs itself, as best it can. Sometimes the generated captions are almost accurate, although not particularly enlightening. Other times, they are hilariously wrong.


There seems to be an epidemic of restaurants that are dispensing with regular dishes in favor of something “creative” to set them apart from other restaurants, particularly in the UK. The Twitter account We Want Plates collects incidents of food being served on weird substitutes like wooden cutting boards, flat caps, flower pots, wicker baskets, marble slabs, and shovels. If there weren’t photographs, you’d think I was making that up.

I’ve seen hot dinners served in skillets (cold food would be weird), and of course you expect a barbecue sandwich to come in a plastic basket lined with paper. But I’ve never been to a restaurant where they just made up stuff to use instead of plates. Have you?


Jeff Thompson created a Twitter account that links us to various websites from the “Internet International Directory,” published in 1995. InternetDir95 Tweets one URL out every hour. Most are dead, because keeping a website active for 20 years is asking a lot. Finding one that is still active is like finding a piece of treasure. Thompson has created several other experimental Twitterbots, some more successful than others.


The Twitter feed Medieval Reactions marries medieval imagery with modern problems. It’s funny, but either or both the art and the text can be NSFW.


Nihilist Arby's is not connected to Arby’s sandwich shop at all, except for the subject matter. This Arby’s has a thin veneer of promotion for the brand, but underneath all that is a soul who is obviously going through an ongoing existential crisis. Contains NSFW language.


Back in January, the New York Times did a profile of rock climber Tommy Caldwell. They referred to his trip to Kyrgyzstan, but in the print edition and initially in the web story, the country was spelled Kyrzbekistan. The internet version was corrected, but not before the fictional Kyrzbekistan became an internet sensation. Eight months later, Kyrzbekistan’s Twitter feed is still educating people about the culture, history, and government of the nation. However, the updates are slowing down, so you may as well enjoy them while they last.

See more in our previous post 12 Strange and Different Twitter Feeds.

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Nervous About Asking for a Job Referral? LinkedIn Can Now Do It for You

For most people, asking for a job referral can be daunting. What if the person being approached shoots you down? What if you ask the "wrong" way? LinkedIn, which has been aggressively establishing itself as a catch-all hub for employment opportunities, has a solution, as Mashable reports.

The company recently launched "Ask for a Referral," an option that will appear to those browsing job listings. When you click on a job listed by a business that also employs one of your LinkedIn first-degree connections, you'll have the opportunity to solicit a referral from that individual.

The default message that LinkedIn creates is somewhat generic, but it hits the main topics—namely, prompting you to explain how you and your connection know one another and why you'd be a good fit for the position. If you're the one being asked for a referral, the site will direct you to the job posting and offer three prompts for a response, ranging from "Sure…" to "Sorry…".

LinkedIn says the referral option may not be available for all posts or all users, as the feature is still being rolled out. If you do see the option, it will likely pay to take advantage of it: LinkedIn reports that recruiters who receive both a referral and a job application from a prospective hire are four times more likely to contact that individual.

[h/t Mashable]

Putu Sayoga, Getty Images
Bali Is Suspending Mobile Web Service for Its Sacred Day of Silence
Putu Sayoga, Getty Images
Putu Sayoga, Getty Images

Nyepi, a Hindu holiday that celebrates the Saka new year, is a sacred tradition on the Indonesian island of Bali. It's a time for silence and mindful meditation, practices that might pose a challenge to a plugged-in generation of smartphone users. To ensure the day passes with as few distractions as possible, religious and civilian leaders in Bali have asked telecommunications companies to shut off their data for 24 hours, AP reports.

From 6 a.m. on Saturday, March 17 until 6 a.m. on Sunday, March 18, Bali residents will be unable to access online news, social media, or any other form of web content on their phones. “Let’s rest a day, free from the internet to feel the calm of the mind,” Gusti Ngurah Sudiana, head of the Indonesian Hinduism Society, said according to AP.

Shutting off mobile data for a full day may sound extreme, but it's just one way the island will respectfully observe the holiday. Throughout Nyepi, Balinese shops and the island's sole airport are closed, and television programs and radio broadcasts are paused. Officials first asked cell phone companies to suspend their data last year, but this is the first year they agreed to comply with the request. An exception will be made for hotels, hospitals, banks, and other vital public services.

Nyepi is followed by Ngembak Geni, a day that also encourages self-introspection. But unlike Nyepi, Ngembak Geni is a day when people are allowed to socialize, even if it is online.

[h/t AP]


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