Nik's analysis here is correct -- t.co links will always be 20 characters. When building a character counter in an application, you'll know that any pasted URL comprises exactly 20 characters.
Taylor On Fri, Aug 13, 2010 at 6:55 AM, Nik Fletcher <nik.fletc...@gmail.com>wrote: > I don't know how Twitter are shortening the URLs. > > However. IIRC Twitter's shortener is designed to always use 20 > characters (I believe) so that as developers we can pass in full URLs > knowing how much space each URL will take up in a tweet and show the > character count accordingly. Matt / Taylor might be able to comment > further though. > > -N > > -- > Nik Fletcher > @nikf > > On Aug 13, 2:17 am, "D. Smith" <emai...@sharedlog.com> wrote: > > How long has it been since Twitter started their own t.com url > > shortener? Not sure, but I don't think it's been long enough to > > shorten over 3.5 trillion urls. > > > > Well, I just noticed that the the url "shortened" by t.com was > > this:http://t.co/5ywZYau > > > > So the value is 5ywZYau > > From what I understand the shorteners work this way (at least this is > > the most effecient way in order to create as short a url as possible): > > First you create a new record for url and get the next available > > numeric id, usually auto increment. Then you use base62 encoding to > > convert this integer into a string. The result is that you get the > > shortest possible value consisting of lower and upper case english > > letters plus 10 numbers, thus a total of 62 chars are used. > > > > The number of chars needed to represent a value is 62 x 62 x 62, > > etc... so the 7 chars-long base 62 string can represent a number over > > 13 digits long. > > > > Ok, so is it really possible for this service to already shorten over > > a trillion urls? I don't think so. which only means that you are not > > doing your best to make the shortest possible url. What's the point of > > registering a one-letter top level domain, going through all the > > trouble of creating your own service and then not really doing your > > absolute best to make sure urls are as short as possible. I mean, you > > could have probably still be using 4, maybe 5 - chars long codes > > instead of 7, saving potential customers 2 or 3 valuable characters >