Let's Make Robots!

Need help with even Bigger-Boy Programming

I have said to many people, that they are asking a question about step 487 when they have not mastered step 1,2 and 3... I write this question with that in my own mind and trying to avoid doing this myself...

I am working on a processing program to talk to twitter with the goal of having Walter the robot send his own tweets and be able to respond to "commands" (key phrases or code words or numbers or whatever) "sent to him" via watching a twitter stream and/or getting a direct message. I have downloaded and installed the "4J" twitter library from processing and I am able to search the whole twitter world via a search term --I have also changed that search term to Walter's user name and have been able to "catch" his tweets (I am tweeting for him now for testing) as they go by. However, twitter has changed its authentication system and complicated my whole life. The system now is the oauth system and needs URL's and keys and secret numbers to be zapped back and forth so both sides (processing and twitter) know who is who and that everything is on the up-and-up. I can not, for the life of me, figure out this system and I worry that I am trying to figure out step 487 and that I don't know 1,2, and 3. Add to this problem, that I don't even know what step I am on, what step 1,2, and 3 actually are or where I should be or should have started.

Question:

I would like to get this twitter thing going, it would be fun and cool --I want to make it go and would probably be happy to forget how I did it as soon as it is working. Option 2 is that I get the twitter thing working and also the experience as a teaching tool to learn the overall concept of API's and working with data from other sources. Where should I go? What should I learn? Is there a list somewhere with all the "learning steps"? --If I were to say to you, "I am interested in writing programs that would allow me to say, tweet and check my email and zap things to facebook, etc.", where would you send me?

I think that's it....  ...so in a nutshell, can someone skype with me and talk me throught the oauth set-up and/or put me on the right path to start leaning this stuff in the right order?

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Found a Java example here http://twitter4j.org/en/code-examples.html#oauth 

So I could slap it into a Service block and, the only missing part would be the PicAxe control ... oh wait .. you already know that :D

I stubbed out the - OAuth Service and downloaded the twitter4J jar ... hooo - this might be fun... 

I can't help but poke around a little....

oop - got some choirs to do .. BBL