released today a new application that brings Twitter's real-time search engine to the desktop. The Adobe AIR application allows users to create persistent real-time Twitter searches that can be grouped together in Sideline's tabbed interface. The application is meant to be a showcase for using Yahoo's UI Library on top of Adobe AIR, but it is also a good real-time search client for Twitter in its own right, with a number of interesting advanced search features.Yahoo
While the basic search in Sideline is indeed quite basic, the program's advanced search provides you with a plethora of options, including searches for hashtags, exact phrases, and even a filter for messages with a positive or negative attitude.
All these searches can be organized into separate tabs, so that you can, for example, create one search tab for mentions of your own brand and products, and another one for keeping tabs on your competitors.
Not a Twitter Client
The application could still use some refinement, and it is still lacking a number of basic features. Because the app is squarely focused on Twitter search, it currently does not provide any of the Twitter client functions like writing tweets or responding to messages from within the app that you would expect from a more fully-featured Twitter client. Sideline, however, does give you the option to respond, though it takes you to Twitter's Web interface to do so.
Of course, to some degree, the real news here isn't even so much this application by itself, but the fact that Yahoo is taking Twitter seriously, and that it has realized the power of Twitter search.
We can see how the application itself could be useful in a limited set of circumstances, but most users are probably better served by a more fully featured client like Tweetdeck. It is important to note, however, that Sideline's source code is licensed under the BSD license, so any interested developer could take the code and extend the application into a full Twitter client.