PicFrog is a useful tool for searching Twitter

As part of my resolution to become more tech savvy this year, I’ve been trying out different apps. Some useful, some not.

A fun app that I tried today in the Community Media Lab is PicFrog, which bills itself as a quick image search accessed through your Twitter account. It is fun because it will pull up just about any Twitter image you want, narrowed to the time frame you want. Sign in through Twitter and follow @PicFrog.

I did a search on “Obama” and, as expected, tons of images of the president came up in many situations. It was a cross section of real and doctored images. I narrowed the search to “Obama today,” which brought up a more manageable 42 images. A search of “Obama health” found four images, including a profanity-laced rant against the president.

A search of “Dexter, MI” brought up images of the bloody cable TV show, “Dexter.” When I plugged in “Dexter, Michigan,” no images came up. That was good since I didn’t want the TV show (I don’t watch it). It was a bummer because I actually wanted pics from Dexter, the town. I’m nosy that way.

Having learned the lesson to be specific, I typed in “Chelsea, Michigan.” That avoided all those pictures from that English soccer team that comes up whenever I’m not specific enough. I received two pictures with my PicFrog search of “Chelsea, Michigan.” Both of these images were humorous. One showed a bundled-up woman who indicated she was “dying a slow and cold related Michigan death.” The other was a liquor bottle with a homemade label and the caption, “Drinking classy tonight.”

Overall, I think PicFrog is a useful tool. If there is a big story out there and you want to know how the Twitter-verse is reacting, it is a quick and easy way to pull up images. Tip: Be specific.

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