I first signed up to Twitter a couple of years ago, pretty much from its start, thanks to Debra Hamel*, who spotted its potential and was one of the service's early adopters. I didn't use Twitter, though, as I didn't find it useful or interesting for anything else I was doing.
Time went by, and not only did Twitter become integrated into other web services (eg if you post a blog post or contribute to Friend Feed or Face Book, your words can automatically be posted to Twitter or vice versa); but also secondary services allowed one to read Twitter in more useful (and less clunky) ways – notably Tweetdeck (mainly) or Thwirl in my case.
I've now installed a Twitter feed into my blog (see left) and am using it as a mini-news and information service. That is, if I see an interesting article in my RSS reader or via someone else on Twitter etc, I will post a link on Twitter or "reTweet" it, as appropriate, and the result will appear in the "Twitter feed" window of this blog. If you think one these articles, which are mostly about the subject-matter of the blog as described above in the subtitle below the word "PETRONA", looks worth reading, then click through to an individual article of interest. The five most recent links show up in the Petrona window. If you want to track all the articles I link to, then "follow" me on Twitter (@Maxine_Clarke) or if you prefer Friend Feed, at my "home" Friend Feed account, where these same links also appear.
If you want links and conversation exclusively about crime, mystery and thriller fiction, you are also welcome to join the FriendFeed room for the purpose. There, I and others who share similar reading interests post links and discuss the articles there and each others' blog posts (which automatically feed into the room). It is not (yet?) possible to integrate a FriendFeed into Petrona.
Any "inconsequential chat" (also known by some observers as "drivel") that I indulge in on Twitter will be in the form of "direct messages" to individual users, so will not show up in the Petrona Twitter feed. All you'll get there are links to articles I find stimulating or otherwise worthy of note but which I'm not writing a blog post about for one reason or another.
Lots of other people use Twitter for many reasons, but this is how I'm using it. In a nutshell: to share links to articles that interest me and that might interest you, with the odd comment about them thrown in.
*Debra is omnipresent on the Internet but you can easily find her various personae via her blog, the Deblog.