Thoughts on Systems

Emil Sit

Sep 3, 2010 - 2 minute read - Hacking Technology gina trapani howto thinkup

How to install ThinkUp on NearlyFreeSpeech

Gina Trapani and ExpertLabs have put ThinkUp, a cool tool for tracking replies to your posts on Twitter. As of September 2010, ThinkUp has a nifty drop-in web-based installer, much like WordPress. Simply grab ThinkUp 0.007 or later, unzip it somewhere that your PHP/MySQL-enabled web server can get at and it’ll prompt you through the installation.

In response to Gina’s post asking for help testing/hacking this long-weekend, I ran through this in about 10 minutes on NearlyFreeSpeech. Here are some quick tips where NFSN’s set-up is a bit different than what is expected by the default installer:

  • After you unzip the ThinkUp dist, run chgrp -R web _lib/view/compiled_view and chmod -R g+w _lib/view/compiled_view so that the templating engine can cache its views.
  • Make sure you have a MySQL process enabled in your NearlyFreeSpeech control panel. A basic MySQL process costs $0.02/day but you can share the process with your WordPress database. Spin up phpMyAdmin in the right-hand sidebar and create a user called thinkup and make sure to check off the option to create a database with the same name and grant all rights to that user. Generate a random password, and copy that password.
  • In the ThinkUp database configuration section, enter thinkup as the user name and database name and paste your generated password. Open the advanced section and change the database host from localhost to your database host name. It’ll be something like username.db; mine, for example, is sit.db.
  • ThinkUp will fail to write the configuration file due to perms but helpfully offers the ability to copy and paste a file. Select the text in the config text box and go back to the terminal where you unzipped the dist. In the thinkup directory, cat >, paste and then Ctrl-D to save the file.

Check your e-mail for the activation link and configure your account. You’ll need to register your installation as a Twitter application and paste in the consumer key and consumer secret. The config page will send you to the Twitter registration page and tell you the callback URL to provide. Leave ThinkUp as a read-only application and leave the ‘Use Twitter for login’ unchecked.

That should do it!

For more details, check out the ThinkUp wiki for more up-to-date instructions.