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'Values of n' engineer heading to Twitter

While spurning Facebook's takeover effort, Twitter hires a software engineer who is known for the "I Want Sandy" app and the virtual sticky note service called Stikkit.

Rael Dornfest is joining Twitter.

Formerly an editor and a CTO for O'Reilly Media, his most recent project is a software house called Values of n, which makes the clever app (and Webware 100 winner) I Want Sandy and the virtual sticky note service called Stikkit.

Both products will shut down at 5 p.m. PST on December 8, according the Values of n blog. However, the Twitter blog says, "The technology...will live on and potentially re-emerge as part of Twitter's systems." It'd be pretty cool if the auto-concierge of I Want Sandy made it into Twitter somehow.

Chances are better that Dornfest's engineering time will be taken up improving Twitter's core services, and possibly working on ways to open up the platform further. Dornfest was co-author of the RSS 1.0 spec; he has some chops in creating universal content standards.

For the Twitter product, this sounds like a good move. But we're still waiting for Twitter's business model to emerge. I bet Dornfest is, too.