The salesman look upset and concerned but took the saw in his hands. Looking at the disgruntled customer, he said "well sir, I'm sorry for the problem. Let's see if we can't find the problem". The salesman pulled the rip cord and turned on the saw...
"Woah!" said the customer. "I didn't know it did that!"
I doubt this story is actually true, but it reminded me a situation I found myself in yesterday. After 18 months of using Twitter as a method of updating students, reading news, and telling poor jokes, I finally discovered threaded "chats" run by dedicated groups of teachers and employees all over the country. Chats are organized conversations, run by a predetermined leader who poses questions and fields answers from all users with the appropriate hashtag. In my "game based learning" chat last night (#gblchat), I got to speak bounce ideas off teachers across the state and the country all working on the same basic issues. Even though there's no conference or organized presentation, it's still possible to gain inspiration and practical application on innovative new techniques. I've already had a few conversations beyond the chatroom and discovered a lot of new sites and models.
In other words, Twitter has been great for the past year and a half, but I haven't nearly begun to tap its potential. In fact, I would bet that's true for many of the tools we're all using. Let's see what happens when we pull the rip cord on our own projects.
(How can you find a Twitter chat? I have no idea. Put some tweets out there and see what you find!)