I just finished installing ThinkUp, the open source social media analytics application, on my server. Because it is built on PHP and MySQL, it was pretty easy to setup in a standard Apache hosting environment, no server configuration was needed. It was as simple to get installed as most open source CMS’s – you create you database, SSH (or FTP) into your server, upload the files to your root directory, then run the installer to connect your database to the application. It takes care of the rest of the installation for you to get the basic app functioning.
Now, things get a little cumbersome when you want to connect your social media accounts to the application. In order to connect Facebook and Twitter, you need to register custom applications on each social platform. This allows ThinkUp to access the data from your profiles and pages, as well as analytics. It’s not a difficult process, but it does take time to do.
The other issue I ran into was running the crawlers for Facebook and Twitter. The first thing I noticed was the message saying I had to leave the screen open while the crawler ran. It would be preferable to have that process run in the background. I then received internal server error issues when running the crawlers for both Facebook and Twitter. This may just require some server tuning, but I have the server set to connections for up to 10 minutes, so there may be some optimization that can be done in the app.
The analytics are good for a out of the box install. I haven’t installed any plugins yet, so I will post more once I get some more time to play around. Right now it’s time for the Super Bowl!