Extract HTTP URIs from a search of Twitter hashtags.
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Twitter URL Extractor

Copyright and Licensing

Copyright Notice

The copyright for the software, documentation, and associated files are held by the author.

Copyright 2012 Todd A. Jacobs
All rights reserved.

The AUTHORS file is also included in the source tree.

Software License

GPLv3 Logo

The software is licensed under the GPLv3. The LICENSE is also included in the source tree.

README License

Creative Commons BY-NC-SA Logo

This README is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.


This is a small tool for extracting HTTP URIs from a search of Twitter hashtags. Given a hashtag, it returns a list of unique links found within the 100 most-recent matching tweets (if any).


  1. Don't expect truly pathological input to yield valid URIs.

  2. Technically valid URIs may still point to the wrong place, or to non-existent resources. Filtering broken links is a job for a link-checker, not a link-extractor.

  3. May not catch uncommon (but valid) URI schemes. If you find one, please report it.

  4. Works best when the URL contains an explicit URI scheme.

  5. Will not find malformed URLs that consist solely of a top-level domain without a URI prefix, e.g. "example.com/foo" will match but just "example.com/" will not.

  6. Will not handle run-on sentences without trailing whitespace. For example:

     "Go to http://example.com/foo.It's really cool!"
     => ["http://example.com/foo.It's"]

Even explicitly matching against all top-level domains won't solve the problem. If you find a solution, please submit a pull request.

  1. Can't handle literal smart-quotes embedded in the URL, since the closing quote is a used as one of the stop characters for quoted URIs.

Supported Ruby Versions

The software was tested against Ruby 1.9.3-p125. Ruby 1.8.x is unsupported.


ruby twitter_url_extractor.rb <hashtag>


These are examples of what you might do when running twitter_url_extractor.rb from the command line.

# Count the number of links in the 100 most-recent tweets.
$ ruby twitter_url_extractor.rb rails | wc -l

# Find "#rails" tweets, and grab the first link found.
$ ruby twitter_url_extractor.rb rails | head -n1

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