Saturday, January 31, 2015

Unusual Alerts from Twitter

tl;dr: I made for your (and my) enjoyment.

I wasn't the first to mock up imaginary push notifications from Twitter, and I regret that I don't even remember from whom it was that I stole my first base layer (including the "May 2B" typo)

I got hooked on this idea, though, and did a few over the last year. Some of my favorites:

What started off as a manual generation process eventually ended up with a fairly low-effort Pixelmator template… but then other folks wanted to make them easily too. So I made an online generator and put it at

The thing took about 30 minutes to put together, I guess, including setting up the domain and hosting. The most obvious nice-to-have would be the ability to save and/or tweet the image directly… but that would've taken more time than I had to invest in a toy like this. On a Mac, ⌃⇧⌘3 copies a selection of the screen to the clipboard, and you can paste it right into Twitter for Mac.

For me it's nice having the time fixed at 9:32, as a kind of signature of this thing; it's not intended to be a generator of forensically sound fakes. And even though it's primitive it's been gratifying to see the fun others have had with it. @samir is a master

@CaseyNewton got started recently with a winner
and @jazzychad weighed in recently on my leaving Twitter