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Twitter: Useful or Not?

I just joined Twitter about an hour or two ago (my twitter), and my second impression is that it’s slow moving. I can get a whole blog post or two done before Twitter updates a preference or posts a message. My first impression, before I even signed up was “this is rediculous!”
I really don’t get Twitter. To me, it is like updating my instant messenger status information on Google Talk and whatnot, something I forget to do regularly, leaving my friends to wonder, “why has David been sleeping for four days now?”
Setting up my account was easy enough, and adding a friend or two was easy as well, but just as I went to change how my Twitter page looks, I was greeted with “Twitter: down for maintenance-be back shortly!” How disappointing. Being a new user, this leads me to wonder about how often outages happen.
I haven’t heard much about Twitter yet, but I have been getting more and more people pressuring me to try it out. John Wiseman (his twitter), a fellow blogger, was finally the breaking point for me, and I signed up. This is pretty much the same reason I have signed up for any service. If all my friends are using it, I might as well be on there to so that I can see what all the fuss is about. A silly reason to join anything, and it only proves that I am a sheep, rather than an early adopter, but I don’t mind.
Will this give me status updates on my friends that really matter? More than half of the messages that have been created by my friends so far are at best silly, and at the worst, useless. The other half of the messages are more in line with what Twitter intended to be, with status reports on where people are, and sometimes tidbits on a link they liked, or a product that they bought.
With the more serious additions, I can get an idea of how a person is doing, what they are doing, and things they have found interesting. The question that I still have though is how useful this is. Will I check Twitter every day? Will my friends continue to update it? Or is all of this twittering just a waste of time?
My friends used to come online and actually start a dialog with me. They would ask me what I have been up to, and I would in turn do the same. With Twitter will they just say, “hi, check my Twitter page?” I really think the last thing the world needs is one way communication, and that is probably why many people are already foreseeing the demise of Twitter.
Some people compare Twitter to microblogging, but without comments, there is no feedback, and thus for me, no connection. Will Twitter survive for a long time? It probably will because of the attention starved people that add new messages to the service and the short attention spans of those who read those messages.
If you like or dislike Twitter, please let me know, and your reason either way would be very helpful in either supporting or maybe even changing my point of view.