Ask Twitter For Directions, And It'll Give You A Map

Twitter wants to tell you where to go. More precisely, it wants to tell you how to get to wherever you want to go, after you send out a tweet asking for directions. Like Moments, @HERE is another innovative, home-brewed attempt to keep Aussies in the Twitter app, but rather than reporting the news this service wants to replace Google Maps in giving you directions and recommendations for what to eat nearby.

Working with HERE and Aussie software development company Proxima, Twitter has turned the @HERE account into a bot that will respond instantly if you tweet at it with the right syntax. The video above explains it best: from your Twitter account, sending off a string like "@HERE ETA to Sydney Airport #AskHERE" will get you a response that includes a link to a web-based HERE map with turn-by-turn directions from your current location to your destination.

Similarly, you can ask for recommendations in your area and Proxima's natural language process will interpret what you're asking and return the location of a nearby attraction. It's an interesting use for Twitter, but it's good to see the service trying out things that are a little bit unconventional. Twitter in Japan has a multitude of bots that help users calculate tips or remind them of their to-do lists, and maybe that's the reason that Twitter is Japan's number one social network.

It's also undoubtedly going to be more useful than today's addition of QR codes to add your friends, too. [Twitter]

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