What with the flaky nature of Twitter of late, I've been playing around with Friendfeed, the social networking tool that allows you to build a customised feed made up of content that friends on other collaborative sites have shared, including news articles, photos, Twitter posts, and weblog postings. Basically it is a web presence stream catching tool.
In addition to displaying the content, the FriendFeed interface on the web, and on clients such as Twhirl or MySocial 24x7, allow you to comment on an item. For example in Twitter if you want to comment you @reply to the individual. The item is posted chronologically, and this makes it difficult to follow conversations. For example this morning Steve Dembo and Ryan Bretag are having a Twitter discussion about the merits of interactive clicker type tools in the classroom. It started last night and continues on this morning, but it is hard to follow on Twitter. In FriendFeed comments are nested with the original Tweet/post. As others comment on the posting they are added along with yours. You also have the option of sending an @reply directly to Twitter. Kind of a foot in both worlds. (the Friendfeed web interface and MySocial 24x7 allow this, Twhirl has not yet implemented this feature.)
I also like that you can follow a friend's web contributions. For example FriendFeed allows you to aggregate posts to sites such as YouTube, Flickr and over 40 other web sites/tools. I am finding that I like following friends and collegues in this manner, rather than jumping around from various sites to see if they have posted anything new.
Update: Another feature of FriendFeed is something they call Rooms. Basically private spaces that a team or workgroup could set up to have a Twitter like discussion area, but only viewable to those that you allow in. Might be useful in a school or classroom setting...