“Audiobots, roll out!” Alexa will be on the road with you before you know it
The Amazon Echo, Google Home, and the rest of the personal audio assistants are seemingly everywhere these days, so the inevitable next step in the audio bots’ steady march toward ubiquity is pretty obvious: the personal automobile. They’ve already succeeded in taking over living rooms and home offices across the country, and soon you’ll also be able to treat your car like your own personal robot slave. Garmin recently announced that it teamed up with Amazon to bring Alexa to all of BMW’s new 2018 models.
The Garmin Speak currently costs about $150 and attaches to your windshield like a standard GPS mount, allowing you to summon Alexa while you’re stuck in traffic. But because Alexa connects to your other smart devices, you’ll also be able to ask Alexa to do things like turn on your house lights or set the temperature in your home before you even pull into your driveway.
The Guardian experiments with live mobile updates for the Roy Moore scandal
The Guardian Mobile Innovation Lab is experimenting with a new mobile story format this week regarding the sexual assault accusations against Roy Moore, the Republican candidate for Senate in Alabama. They’ve created this mobile page, will update as the story progresses over the next few days. When users return to the page, it will only show you the information that is new to you, specifically. The format is meant be viewed on mobile, and Android users on Chrome browsers can sign up for notifications above to be automatically alerted to significant story updates.
We all have 280 characters now — is that a good or bad thing?
Trick question. It’s probably a little of both. Lívia De Paula Labate (@livlab) argues — via Twitter thread, of course — that there are benefits and downfalls to both. For one, only having 140 characters to work with made it crucial for users to be succinct in their writing and careful when editing. It also forced users to come up with innovative new approaches to storytelling when using the platform. The Twitter thread itself is a perfect example of such innovation and adaptation. Labate has much more to say on this topic, and I highly recommend you check out her thread.
Democracy Dies in Dankness: It turns out behaving like an actual human being is a great way to engage with people online
Some groundbreaking revelations coming out of the Washington Post: people on the Internet don’t like being the target of blatant marketing campaigns. As it turns out, people online will respect and trust you more if you don’t just treat them like a mark. The Washington Post learned this valuable lesson after spending a considerable amount of time using their /u/washingtonpost account on Reddit to actually engage, joke and have conversations with other Reddit users.
The fact that people respond better to a more human approach from news publications and other brands online is further backed up by Darnelle O’Brien, who wrote about the value of getting personal on social media in an article for the marketing publication Business2Community.
Now you can read the news while you’re stuck in the tunnel
Another experiment from the Guardian’s Mobile Innovation Lab addresses an issue that most commuters have likely encountered during their daily slog to and from work: data dead zones. The new app, dubbed LabRdr, prepares a daily “package” of Guardian content based on the articles and content the user has previously accessed. LabRdr (which can either be pronounced as “Labrador” or “lab reader”) creates “content recommendations through transparent use of data,” giving users a higher degree of control as it pushes out minimal (but thoughtful) alerts.
Chart of the month:
Upcoming trainings & events:
SIX CONVERSATIONS ABOUT THE INTERNET’S PAST DECADE AND THE COMING ONE
The social web was born 10 years ago with the unveiling of the first iPhone, Twitter’s debut at SXSW, Facebook growth beyond college dorms, and the first Presidential debate on YouTube. To explore what we’ve learned about the internet over the past decade and what we might expect in 2027, the Knight Foundation has invited 13 entrepreneurs, journalists and scholars to the Paley Center on Nov. 16 for an afternoon of dialogue. Free. More info.
BLOCKCHAIN FOR SOCIAL IMPACT CONFERENCE
Join BCIS at the Microsoft Technology Center on Nov. 17 for the inaugural assembly of technologists, entrepreneurs, impact investors and futurists, as we converge to help solve global challenges in the areas of financial inclusion, supply chain, identity & vulnerable populations, and energy & environment, using the most world’s most revolutionary technology — Ethereum blockchain. Tickets are $120. More info.
ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: IMPLICATIONS FOR BUSINESS STRATEGY
This on-demand online course from the MIT Sloan School of Management aims to give you a practical grounding in artificial intelligence (AI) and its business applications, equipping you with the knowledge and confidence you need to help you transform your organization into an innovative, efficient, and sustainable company of the future. Click here to get the course brochure.
Bots, AI, and messaging apps
- Voice search: Content may be king, but context is queen in the new voice-first world by Michelle Robbins
- A new feature in The Washington Post’s Opinion section will alert readers to opposite viewpoints (with the help of AI) by Laura Hazard Owen
- Bot or not? How to tell if that person subtweeting you is real by Ren LaForme
- Twitter’s bot problem isn’t going away, and Virginia election is Exhibit A by Mathew Ingram
- Garmin teamed up with Amazon to make a tiny Echo Dot for your car by Valentina Palladino
- How AI has started to impact our work as designers by Fabricio Teixiera
- Even automating just parts of journalists’ fact-checking efforts can speed up their work. Is this the right tool? by Demetrios Pogkas
- If podcasts and radio move to smart speakers, who will be directing us what to listen to? by Nicholas Quah
- Audioburst launches a web and mobile search engine for audio news by Sarah Perez
- The Year in Push Alerts: How breaking news became our lives by Andrew Kahn, with art by Holly Allen and additional help from Rachel Withers
- OneSignal integration with Plot Projects for targeting notifications by location via OneSignal
- Hack the Radio, a French startup, aims to liberate podcasts by streaming audio from a chatbot by Laura Hazard Owen
Virtual and augmented reality
- Facebook’s charm offensive for AR advertisers gains speed by Seb Joseph
- Thanks to AR, discoverability has become even harder in the Apple App Store by Ilyse Liffreing
Revenue and sustainability
- 8 Predictions About The Future Of Advertising by Giselle Abramovich
- Deep Dive Into Facebook Finds Dim Revenue Hopes for News Sites by Tom Grubisich
- Civil, the blockchain-based journalism marketplace, is building its first batch of publications by Ricardo Bilton
- Why does journalism need blockchain technology? by Maria Bustillos
- Audioburst receives $6.7m to build web and mobile search engine for audio news via Crunchburst
- Sustainability: The opportunities for civic tech by Alissa Black
- JCPenney’s Outgoing Mobile Chief: Digital Integration Vital for Retail Brands by Joseph Zappa
- Reddit CEO: Company May Go Public by 2020 by Janko Roettgers
Innovation and entrepreneurship
- New app provides reporters with real-time speech-to-text transcriptions at low cost by Renata Johnson
- With video and audio, The Skimm pushes further into the daily routines of its 6 million readers by Christine Schmidt
- In much of sub-Saharan Africa, mobile phones are more common than access to electricity via The Economist Data Team
- When desperation leads to innovation — embracing mobile journalism by Kyle Bakx
- The Next Great Media Channel Is the Self-Driving Car. Will Brands Be Ready? by Thomas Bloch
- The Guardian Mobile Lab’s latest experiment targets public transit commuters with an offline news app by Christine Schmidt
- Introducing LabRdr: An Experimental Offline News App That Knows Youby Sasha Koren
- Prothom Alo is building the largest mobile journalism network in Bangladesh by Caroline Scott
- We can use our smartphones to elect our leaders — here’s how by Shachar Owen
Social tools and platforms
- Social media teams could fight misinformation rather than just posting links, an API report suggests by Christine Schmidt
- Tip: Check out this advice for editing Instagram images within the app by Caroline Scott
- The Value of Getting Personal On Social Media by Darnelle O’Brien
- Twitter Thread: “The 140 character constraint was a really lovely aspect of Twitter. It forced succinct writing, better editing and also made way for innovative approaches in storytelling…” by Lívia De Paula Labate
- After a decade, it’s time to reinvent social media in newsrooms by Jane Elizabeth
- ESPN launches SportsCenter on Snapchat by Sara Fischer
- Your Quick Guide to Using LinkedIn to Distribute Content by Liam Corcoran
- The Washington Post on Reddit surprises users with its non-promotional, ultra helpful presence by Shan Wang
- Snapchat adds Context Cards to sponsored lenses, filters by Robert Williams
- How the NYT used video forensics to tell ‘the most complete’ story of the Las Vegas shootings by Ren LaForme
- A big week for tech blowback: Regulation, broken promises, and Facebook victimhood by Ricardo Bilton
- Facebook and Apple can’t agree on terms, so Facebook’s subscription tool will only launch on Android phones by Peter Kafka
Research and reports
- Study: Mobile platforms to reap half of digital ticket sales by 2018 by Robert Williams
- New stats on local digital news, and other things you missed from the 2017 LION local news conference by Laura Hazard Owen
Design and development
- Not every article needs a picture by Hanson O’Haver
- Improving Our Video Experience — Part One: Our On-Demand Video Platform by Flávio Ribeiro
- Improving Our Video Experience — Part Two: Our Live Streaming Platformby Flávio Ribeiro, John Whitehead, Said Ketchman
- Turns out the flyby reader is more valuable than often thought by Lucia Moses
- ‘We’re cleaning up the mess’: Publishers prepare for a post-autoplay world by Lucia Moses
- Snapchat is reportedly getting a completely new look next month by Ryan Brownie
Commentary and more
- Meet the People Who Listen to Podcasts at Super-Fast Speeds by Doree Shafrir
- ‘Way too little, way too late’: Facebook’s factcheckers say effort is failingby Sam Levin
- We’re looking forward and back at the Internet as the Knight News Challenge turns 10 by John S. Bracken
- The Digital Double Standard by Simon Dumenco.
- Newsonomics: The New York Times’ Mark Thompson on regulating Facebook, global ambition, and when to stop the presses (forever) by Ken Doctor
- Smartphones Are Weapons of Mass Manipulation, and This Guy Is Declaring War on Them by Rachel Metz
- After-On Podcast, Episode 13: Ev Williams | Medium, Twitter & Networked Words by Rob Reid
- Don’t Get Caught in the Middle by Paul Michelman
- One year on, we’re still not recognizing the complexity of information disorder online by Claire Wardle and Hossein Derakhshan
- How to Turn Students into Responsible News Consumers by Kim Lisagor Bisheff
- Securing Your Mobile Devices: Part 1 — How to protect your most-used computers by David Koff (Paywall: Medium members only)
- Securing Your Mobile Devices: Part 2 — How to protect your most-used computers by David Koff (Paywall: Medium members only)
The Center for Cooperative Media will curate information about our efforts and the work of our grantees, along with relevant industry trends via this monthly newsletter, the contents of which will also be published on the NJ Mobile News Lab blog.