Stay calm, tweeters
Some developers have been left feeling a little apprehensive after recent moves made by Twitter to create its own apps for the iPhone and BlackBerry. The unsettling feelings continued after comments from investor Fred Wilson that Twitter should be creating its own apps in categories initially created by third-party developers.

But at Twitter’s Chirp conference in San Francisco last month, the company’s director of platforms, Ryan Sarver, tried to ease some worries. “Twitter is the way it is because of the ecosystem. There is no way we can be successful without you guys,” he said.

Sarver then went on to discuss future features and projects, one being potentially useful to developers: annotations. This functionality will enable developers to add any type of metadata to a tweet. Although it’s exciting to think about what products and features can come from this, it can also potentially lead to a mess if one app can’t interpret another’s metadata. — Katie Serignese

DLNA disappointment
It’s disappointing when standards are left to go stale. Such is the case with DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance), a specification that is designed to network entertainment devices together.

My new Samsung LCD television comes with DLNA client software. There are a number of DLNA media servers available, but none of them fully interoperate with my TV. Throw in DRM and the latency added by a wireless home network, and you get a terrible user experience.

More interoperability testing would iron out some of the wrinkles, but it does not seem that device makers are in any hurry to improve DLNA. The trend has become to preload ‘widgets’ on devices, which connect directly to media services on the Web. Those don’t work so well either.

The plumbing is there, but no device maker has offered a compelling solution as of yet. Set-top boxes shouldn’t be necessary. I’m reminded of the pre-Apple smartphone market. — David Worthington

Chiptunes making a comeback
One of the unintended results of a generation of children raised on 8-bit video games has been the rather shocking rise of chiptune as a musical genre. I was watching the British show “Skins,” and this fact was brought to my attention during one particularly emotional scene.

With the main characters in a night club, the typical TV show band cameo took place. But this time it was different: The band in question was the Crystal Castles, a chiptune band that backs most of its songs with roughly cut, cheap synthesizer music and low-tech filtered voices.

It was an interesting moment for me. I liked the music, and suddenly I realized that the music I loved so much from C64 and Nintendo games back in the 1980s has now become an influential force in the almost-mainstream music world. After all, 50 Cent did do a song where he sampled from a C64 already.

I guess what excites me the most is that we, as a species, are not throwing 30 years worth of computer history out just because our chips have gotten faster. It’s nice to see old technology still alive in the world of art. — Alex Handy