TwitterTwitter is an online social networking service and microblogging service that enables its users to send and read text-based messages of up to 140 characters, known as "tweets".

It was created in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey and launched that July. The service rapidly gained worldwide popularity, with over 500 million active users as of 2012, generating over 340 million tweets daily and handling over 1.6 billion search queries per day. Since its launch, Twitter has become one of the top 10 most visited websites on the Internet, and has been described as "the SMS of the Internet." Unregistered users can read tweets, while registered users can post tweets through the website interface, SMS, or a range of apps for mobile devices.

Twitter Inc. is based in San Francisco, with additional servers and offices in New York City, Boston, and San Antonio.

Twitter has been cited as an important factor in the Arab Spring and other political protests.

The Twitter Web interface uses the Ruby on Rails framework, deployed on a performance enhanced Ruby Enterprise Edition implementation of Ruby.

As of April 6, 2011, Twitter engineers confirmed they had switched away from their Ruby on Rails search-stack, to a Java server they call Blender.

From spring 2007 to 2008 the messages were handled by a Ruby persistent queue server called Starling, but since 2009 implementation has been gradually replaced with software written in Scala. The service's application programming interface (API) allows other web services and applications to integrate with Twitter.

Twitter emphasized its news and information-network strategy in November 2009 by changing the question asked to users for status updates from "What are you doing?" to "What's happening?" Entertainment Weekly put it on its end-of-the-decade, "best-of" list, saying, "Limiting yourself to 140 characters—the maximum for messages on this diabolically addictive social-networking tool—is easy."

On November 22, 2010, Biz Stone, a cofounder of the company, expressed for the first time the idea of a Twitter news network, a concept of a wire-like news service he has been working on for years.

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Twitter", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.