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A word on how to catch our words quickly

Twitter Permit us to pause a moment to show readers how to get immediate notice of our reports. We'd also like to highlight a new reason to return to our front page during the day to see mini-updates.

Twitter makes both of these features possible. The moment a blog article is posted, Twitter notifies you if you're following @3000newswire on the service. Even if you don't participate in Twitter, the note appears in our Twitter section of this page -- right-hand column, just under the Transoft ad.

That's also the spot where our mini-updates appear, as well as in your Twitter feed if you follow us. (Do you see a pattern here? We like Twitter because tweet have to be short: 140 characters or less. For an old print headline writer like me, it's a fun challenge.) We're working on one or two Twitter extras during the workdays, sometimes with a link. We'll do Outtakes, since most stories have more material than we can use. We don't want to wear out our welcome. Readers have things to do in addition to keeping up with what's new or helpful.

You can also get our reports sent to you via other services. Twitter is hot now. But there's other technology to keep our news on your plate.

Some of our audience uses newsreader software to take our daily feeds. This is powered by the RSS standard. Bruce Hobbs, a veteran 3000 developer, swears by Google Reader. There are others, some tied to mail services like Yahoo, others standalone programs. Newsreaders give you a timeline of articles, just like our blog does. You control what you see, although the helpful Twitter links won't be on a newsreader feed.

How to newsread? Right-hand column again, just above the Community Comments. "Subscribe to this blog's feed." One click and you're on the way to having the 3000 NewsWire appear in your reader.

Several years ago, we invited readers to send a request to have us e-mail a "Blog Me" update when articles appeared. Twitter gives us a foolproof way to avoid the spam boxes with your requests. Weekly or so, we will remind you of the articles, via e-mail. But the best way to stay up to the minute, and keep up with updated tweets, is through Twitter or on this page.

We return you now to our regular coverage, in this main column, on individual category or article pages -- or over on the Twitter feed at right. Follow us.