It's bothered me for a while that I can't keep up with all the people I follow on Twitter. Why? Because for Twitter, chronology is king. The Tweet shows up first, and everything else gets pushed out of view. This was a great way to introduce the idea of the "real-time" web, and had a huge role in making Twitter the go-to resource for information as it unfolds. However, it doesn't provide a great way to understand the most important things you may have missed.
Facebook has seen a similar issue, and provided a solution. With an average of 130 friends, most Facebook users have trouble keeping up. Facebook's solution was to create two feeds - a "top news" feed that takes into account what's most popular, and a "most recent" feed that would seem to be chronological.
But it may not be that simple... In an article from October of last year, Thomas Weber from The Daily Beast conducted an experiment to try and figure out how Facebook determines what shows up in the feed, and it turns out, it's not that straightforward. According to the post, Weber says:
"Many users naturally assume that Most Recent contains every update from all of their friends. Not so, as our experiment showed. Even with test-subject Simonetti posting updates, links, photos, and videos several times a day, a few of our volunteers found that the items didn't appear in their Most Recent feeds. (At least, not until we took additional steps to up Phil's visibility.) If you've never tinkered with the "Edit Options" button on your Most Recent feed, this underscores why you should check it out—there's a little-used setting that caps the number of friends shown in the feed."
Clearly, what Facebook is offering is options and some settings to help users make sense of the overwhelming amount of updates from their friends. Twitter has attempted one solution with Twitter Lists. The idea is supposed to be that categorizing your followers into more "bite size" groups will help you keep up. Yet the problem is the same as it is on Facebook - no one wants to spend the time sifting through their friends and people they're following. I don't think they should have to put that time in, when technology can do it faster.
Twitter doesn't need to adopt Facebook's solution... Rather, they need to provide options for how to view the feed. There have been some third party solutions tapping into the Twitter API to try and create sense of the feed, like Key Tweet, but I think this is something Twitter should provide as core functionality.