Twitpocalypse! The end is near!

Remember the nasty Y2K bug those 9 long years ago? Remember how there was a serious scare about computers not being able to comprehend the number 2000, and therefore generating errors that would destroy the world? Well, this is similar, but with twitter. *Sigh*

2,147,483,647 is the maximum value of a standard signed interger in computer programming. That means that if an interger is OVER 2,147,483,647, then it simply doesn’t store the data its told to, and returns negative values. And at a rate of 155 tweets per second, this number is being approached, very very quickly.

Why is this important? Who really cares about intergers and negative values? Well, think of it like this; if posts have no means of identifying themselves (via this interger,) then they can’t be posted, and if they aren’t posted, they can’t be displayed by browsers, nor be accessed via 3rd party twitter clients. Ouch.

So, if the great guys at Twitter don’t think of something within the next 2 hours, then twitter might shut down, turn off their API (the scripting they have that lets 3rd party Twitter clients access Twitter information), or worse; the end of the world. Except without the earth opening up and magma spewing everywhere.

Anyways, cross your fingers, and ride this one out… And hope that those guys at Twitter pull through.

Update: Twitpocalypse has happened!

Anddd… here’s a list of things that happened.

  • First off, a lot of programs relying on the Twitter API ceased to function. A patch, dubbed “YAJL,” using a library by the same name, was released to fix most of these issues.
  • For anyone who received issues with YAJL, a secondary patch was released, and can be found here.
  • Twitter’s Search feature temporarily lost all functionality.
  • Twitteriffic mobile, Destroy Twitter, and Tweet Deck, to name a few, all lost functionality. Tweet Deck has released a patch, and most other apps will be patched soon.
  • Tweetie, and several other similar apps, is experiencing issues with its “Trends” feature. Grh.

Well, in brigher news, everything can be patched, with no serious damage. If you want to tweet, you’ll have to use twitter.com‘s interface, which, when it all comes down to it, isn’t so bad at all.