A new technology trend could help dieters the world over strike a happy balance between relying on community support and holding themselves accountable. It's called Tweet What You Eat (TWYE), and it may be on to something. What is TWYE, you might ask? To understand this latest movement toward the digitalization of daily life, we'll need to start first with the phenomenon that is Twitter.
For those of you who have not yet succumbed to the urge to update everyone on anything you can fit into 140 characters or fewer (I myself relented a few months ago), Twitter is sweeping the globe as a fantastic social connector and, now, an innovative diet aid. At first, most laughed at Twitter as a preposterous model—after all, who wants to write or read about such banal, everyday facts as what you had for breakfast this morning? Turns out, the answer is everyone.
It seems there is no end to the uses people have found for Twitter. The flexibility of this model to incorporate the creativity and ingenuity offered by its millions of "tweeple" (Twitter users) has been touted as part of Twitter's genius: It has become a beast of the user's creation, far and beyond what its original creators could ever have imagined.
TWYE is just one of the latest and most provocative online movements spawned by and for Twitter users, leveraging Twitter's community-based model to make dieting a team effort (or a guilt-trip). Touted as "the easiest food diary you'll ever keep" TWYE encourages users to give every morsel that passes their lips a life online. Participating users send real-time, digital updates (a.k.a. "tweets") to the community of TWYE followers on, well, what they ate. The tweeter can either try to guess how many calories he or she consumed or allow a nifty new service called CrowdCal to automatically guesstimate the calorie count for a particular food based on similar entries from the community. TWYE also offers a service that allows you to track any weight loss to see if a particular diet is working.
Who Uses TWYE?