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SAN FRANCISCO — Companies big and small monitor Twitter to find out what their customers like and what they want changed. Twitter does the same.

It started two years ago as a bare-bones service, offering little more than the ability to post 140-character messages. Then, it outsourced its idea generation to its users. The company watches how people use the service and which ideas catch on. Then its engineers turn the ideas into new features.

Twitter Serves Up Ideas From Its Followers