Thursday, 1 May 2014

@RobotAdvice is a friendly little Twitter Bot that just wants to help you with all your problems. I made her!

It's a little red tin toy robot.


I love advice columns. I love bots. 

I've written about my love of advice columns before:

Delicious schadenfreude is certainly part of the appeal, but what I like most about advice columns is they also give the illusion that every problem has a solution, that every question can be answered.
I once wrote into an advice column, and my question was published with a cute little reply. It was so nice, seeing my fears and insecurities validated, that my problem was a wider human problem, which a great many people will have to struggle with at one time or another. It was nice that my problem had an answer, that everything would be okay.
The problem had resolved itself (or rather, I'd resolved it?) about five hours before. Still, it was nice to know that everything would have been okay anyway, sooner or later. 

I also kinda love bots. I've written before about how I feel an affinity with them some days. I wrote:

I don't have all the answers. I can't fix all your problems. I'm not a problem-solving robot with endless time and energy to fix things. Especially on the internet this week.

So yeah, this is something I've had floating around in my head for a while. Sometime's all you want is to be listened to, and that's what @RobotAdvice does.

Back up, what's a Twitter Bot?

A Twitter Bot is an automated Twitter account, which hums along creating content which may or may not be related to the world around it. I created @RobotAdvice using Twittbot. It's a Japanese program, which lets you set up Tweets, control the intervals at which they'll be sent, and set up replies to be automatically sent when a user mentions you. 

If you check out the link - Twittbot isn't very user friendly. I might write up a tutorial another time.

What Does RobotAdvice say?

Robot advice spouts off little pieces of wisdom - some corny, some pretty good - at regular intervals. I pulled some of these out of my own head, and found some by googling things like "best advice."

RobotAdvice didn't help me! 

It's a robot, it cannot love.

I know what RobotAdvice should say next! 

Tell me in the comments! 


  1. "Keep your fluids up, dear" - my mum, circa forever (because she is a nurse)

    1. Love it! I've added it to her tweets and replies :D