Curated for content, computing, and digital experience professionals

Category: Gilbane Advisor (Page 2 of 11)

The Gilbane Advisor is curated by Frank Gilbane for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. The focus is on strategic technologies. We publish articles via email and on our blog more or less twice a month except for August and December, and we publish relevant news items weekly. Subscribe here

We do not sell or share personal data. See our privacy policy, and our editorial policy.

Gilbane Advisor 6-3-20 — AMP life, what VR, platforms, skills

New page experience focus for a better web

The open web has always been critical to Google’s business, which is why AMP was both puzzling and controversial. AMP’s faster page display was a clear benefit, but the forced and limited format made user experiences worse and was a burden with a questionable upside and loss of control for publishers. This post from Google’s Webmaster Central blog on upcoming search ranking changes has some welcome news. In addition to focusing more on web page experience [emphasis added]…

As part of this update, we’ll also incorporate the page experience metrics into our ranking criteria for the Top Stories feature in Search on mobile, and remove the AMP requirement from Top Stories eligibility. Google continues to support AMP, and will continue to link to AMP pages when available.  

Google page experience

This is good for the open web, web user experience, and publishers. Google will obviously still compete with publishers as it continues to add richer results to its search pages. But their advantage will not necessarily be unfair, and a Google walled garden should be less of a concern. It is of course also good for Google as it heads into more serious calls for regulation. Read More

SaaS companies, app platforms, and product integrations

Scott Brinker has been making a case for “app platforms” as part of a model for understanding existing landscapes comprised of large platforms and extremely large numbers of “specialist apps”. In this post he looks at some research that ‘examined integrations, public APIs, and “app centers” offered by the 1,000 fastest growing SaaS companies from 2019’ by product category. Scott’s discussion and the detailed research he links to are worth a look by market and business strategists. Read More

The skills content professionals in government need

Our .gov readers will find this report by Ksenia Cheinman especially valuable, but the information and approach will also be helpful to commercial organizations. Ksenia provides a link to short version of the full research report in case you need to whet your appetite. Read More

The VR winter

Benedict Evans…

The problem is, we haven’t worked out what you would do with a great VR device that isn’t a game (or some very niche industrial application), and it’s not clear that we will. We’ve had five years of experimental projects and all sorts of content has been tried, and nothing other than games has really worked. … Pulling all of these threads together, the issue I circle around is not just that we don’t have a ‘killer app’ for VR beyond games, but that we don’t know what the path to getting one might be. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.
We do not sell or share personal data.

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Gilbane Advisor 5-5-20 — no proof, medium hard, build it, pod-mail?

A radical solution to scale AI technology

Skip the proof of concept? This isn’t, or shouldn’t, be radical. It’s often a good idea for large scale projects, and not just for AI, or other digital experience or content technology initiatives.

Illustration: Israel G. Vargas
scaling AI
 
The example in this article is a customer experience chatbot for Nordea. Read More

How Medium became the best and worst place for coronavirus news

Medium’s pivots over the years created confusion about what they are and who they are for. The editorial challenges inherent in being both a platform and a publisher have only increased over time. Zoe Schiffer’s topical case study illustrates how difficult this balance is. Read More

It’s time to build

If you haven’t read this recent post by Marc Andreessen you should. Though prompted by frustration over our collective response to the current coronavirus pandemic, his prescription for preventing such future failures addresses a broader set of societal problems. Some he mentions; others are implicit, or follow, such as the focus on rent-seeking of wall street, VCs, and, well, too many of us. Read More

The New York Times’ morning email newsletter is getting an official “host and anchor”

Joshua Benton asks “Can any of the lessons of The Daily’s success be carried over into your inbox?” and attempts an answer, or rather asks the right questions. The new “The Morning” launched this week, and as someone who curates a newsletter I’ll be paying attention. But a podcast and an email newsletter are very different animals. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.
We do not sell or share personal data.

Subscribe | Feed | View online | Privacy policy | Editorial policy

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Gilbane Advisor 4-3-20 — WFH, content technology, AGI not

Content and MarTech vendor subway maps

In 2008 Tony Byrne came up with the idea of a “subway map” as a useful and fun way to illustrate the content technology vendor landscape. He has updated the map every year to incorporate the shifting landscape, sprawling growth, adjacent technologies, and of course the renaming and repositioning by vendors and market analysts.  

content technology vendor subway map

In this article, he shares all 12 subway maps and his thoughts on the changes each year. History is always relevant. A good read. Read More

Scroll, Firefox and ad-free news

Though their impact may be small, at least to start, the business model is interesting. Read More

Scroll and Firefox no-ad news

RealWorld framework comparison 

Handy up-to-date info for front-end-developers. Comparing performance, size, and lines of code implementing Conduit. Read More

RealWorld frameworks

The end of Starsky Robotics

This is a cautionary tale of what can happen when an enthusiastic founder and hungry investors crank each other up without guarding against mutually assured destructive confirmation bias, and don’t do enough serious due diligence. This scenario is unfortunately common, though often with enough funding/time/expert support a pivot or two can prevent disaster.

In this particular case, the problem was a naive expectation of what machine learning could, or would soon be able to, accomplish. Even the possibility of Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) is controversial among experts in the field. I only share this because Starsky’s founder and CEO Stefan Seltz-Axmacher had the courage to publish it. Kudos to him for sharing what happened, and providing enough detail for a valuable case study for entrepreneurship programs. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December. We do not sell or share personal data.

Subscribe | Feed | View online | Privacy policy | Editorial policy

 

 

Gilbane Advisor 3-4-20 — IKEA, T5, AI

IKEA sets a new privacy standard for marketers

Tim Walters reports on an impressive approach by IKEA to earn consumer’s trust, by doing rather than (just) promising. As Tim says, you should really watch the IKEA video description and demo with their delightfully down-to-earth Chief Digital Officer, Barbara Martin Coppola. Read More

Transfer Learning with T5: the Text-To-Text Transfer Transformer

Many of you are familiar with natural language processing (NLP) from the rule-based machine translation in the 80s to today’s more successful machine learning approaches. This post from the Google AI Blog describes a promising new Transfer Learning technique and openly available tools. Slightly technical with a link to the academic paper.

With T5, we propose reframing all NLP tasks into a unified text-to-text-format where the input and output are always text strings, in contrast to BERT-style models that can only output either a class label or a span of the input. Our text-to-text framework allows us to use the same model, loss function, and hyperparameters on any NLP task, including machine translation, document summarization, question answering, and classification tasks (e.g., sentiment analysis). Read More

The new business of AI (and how it’s different from traditional software)

Martin Casado and Matt Bornstein from Andreessen Horowitz wrote a thoughtful piece for AI startups and investors on the differences between the business models of AI companies and software companies. As investors they have a particular interest in the margin potential look at the resources and costs associated with each. My take is that is that they have identified a difference of degree rather than of kind, at least in the case of enterprise software applications, which have similar scaling, “humans in the loop”, interoperability, custom development, and support requirements. Large scale content management systems and “digital experience platforms” are examples. In any case, this is a good read, and all the authors’ recommendations should also be considered by traditional enterprise software companies :).  Read More

Update on technology transformations

McKinsey reports on enterprise’s view and appetite for continued technology transformation. Tldr; it’s hard but showing benefits, and competitiveness demands its continuation. Read More

Business side support IT in top companies

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December. We do not sell or share personal data.

Gilbane Advisor 2-11-20 — future fingers, collaboration, taxonomy, adtech

Mapping workplace collaboration startups

Merci Victoria Grace provides a very useful breakdown of the current workplace collaboration space. As an investor her interest is in opportunities, but her insights also inform enterprise strategists and buyers considering not just products, but use cases. Read More

workplace collaboration startups
Workplace Collaboration Market Map by Merci Victoria Grace

Apple’s ‘Finger Devices’: wearable computing’s next big thing?

CB Insights reports on a new patent application from Apple. While “next big thing” is bit over-enthusiastic, they are right that it has potential as a core component of Apple’s coming wearable computing ecosystem.

While other patents have explored the use of fingers and virtual interfaces and feedback systems, this patent appears the first to contemplate the finger as the seat of a full-fledged computing device — containing a full battery of sensors, input and output systems, and the capacity to interact with other devices in different categories. Read More

Lumping and Splitting in Taxonomy

Taxonomies are often avoided because they are complex and require nurturing. Michael Andrews on why they are a necessary information technology…

Classification is the bedrock of algorithms: they drive automated decisions. Yet taxonomies are human designed. Taxonomies lack the superficial impartiality of machine-oriented linked data or machine learning classification. But taxonomies are useful because of their perceived limitations. They require human attention and human judgment. That helps make data more explainable. Read More

As Google Chrome crumbles the third-party cookie, what’s next for adtech?

Aside from the obvious boost for first-party data – where the legit value has always been – there are a number of questions on how and when this will all play out. The Drum collects some thoughts from adtec insiders. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December. We do not sell or share personal data.

Gilbane Advisor 1-14-20 — chatbots, pages that last, replacing martech

Dear Reader:

We have updated our privacy policy to include information about support for California’s CCPA and encourage you to read it. If you don’t have the time right now there is a link at the bottom of every issue of this newsletter and on every page on our web site. Note that we do not sell or share personal data.

Lessons from the failed chatbot revolution

“… and 5 industries where the tech is making a comeback.” This free report from CB Insights nails the story of the crazy hype and why some chatbots are succeeding. Read More

Chatbot shopping by age

This page is designed to last

Jeff Huang, in his Manifesto for Preserving Content on the Web, asks “How do we make web content that can last and be maintained for at least 10 years?”. It doesn’t sound like much of a challenge, but as someone with a 20+ year old website he didn’t need to convince me. Keeping up with varying life-cycles of web development tools, design trends, and links to sites no longer functioning, is not for everyone. And depending on platforms designed for non-developers is too risky for 10+ years. There is no simple solution but Professor Huang’s article has some suggestions for both tool developers and site managers. Read More

Open federal grant data is the default in the U.S.

Congress has quietly made an open, license-free identifier for the recipients of federal grants the default option for agencies in the United States. While truly open grant data is not mandatory, every agency must now decide whether to use non-proprietary identifiers or not. Read More

83% of marketers rip-and-replace a martech app each year

Scott Brinker highlights findings of a recent research report (link to full report included) on what martech applications are being replaced and why. While 83% will sound scary if you’re a vendor, remember how many martech apps there are. Also, about half the replacements were for custom in-house systems. (CMS vendors will be relieved to hear that only 4% of commercial CMSs were replaced, lower than most categories). Scott also notes that better integration was tied with better features and cost reduction as the top reason for replacement. Of course better integration directly affects operational costs and makes additional features possible. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December. We do not sell or share personal data.

Gilbane Advisor 11-20-19 — content value, enterprise search, EU, GOOG, FB

Content accounting: calculating value of content in the enterprise

Sarah O’Keefe provides a guide for measuring the business value of content for companies of all sizes. Helpful for content professionals, project managers, and senior management. Includes a sample P&L and balance sheet. Justify your project. Read More

content balance sheet

Content management on intranets: centralized, distributed, and hybrid models

This will be basic for many of you but is a clear and accessible description of the differences and the pros and cons of each model to share with non-specialist or non-technical colleagues. Read More

Google vs EU pubs and Facebook’s new trick

Frederic Filloux looks at the state of the complicated dance among EU publishers, Google, and Facebook in light of the recent announcements and motivations of each of them, and some research on news search behavior. A good read. Read More

The key to millions: enterprise search?

Steve Arnold dishes out a dose of reality in his inimitable slightly snarky way on the realities of the enterprise search market. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

Gilbane Advisor 10-22-19 — Interoperability, ambient computing, CCPA

Microsoft puzzling announcements

Jean-Louis Gassée has some good questions, including… “Is Microsoft trying to implement a 21st century version of its old Embrace and Extend maneuver — on Google’s devices and collaboration software this time?” Read More

Microsoft Duo

Integrated innovation and the rise of complexity

While Stephen O’Grady’ post isn’t addressing Microsoft‘s recent Surface announcements as Gassée was, it is an interesting companion, or standalone read. Read More

Google and ambient computing

‘Ambient computing‘ has mostly been associated with the Internet of Things (IoT). There are many types of computing things. But the most important, from a world domination perspective, are those at the center of (still human) experience and decision-making; that is mobile (and still desktop) computing devices. The biggest challenge is the interoperability required at scale. This is fundamental to computing platform growth and competitive strategies (see Gassée’s question above). Ben Thompson analyzes Google recent announcements in this context. Read More

Attention marketers: in 12 weeks, the CCPA will be the national data privacy standard. Here’s why

Now it’s 10 weeks. Tim Walters makes a good case for his prediction even though other states are working on their own legislation, and Nevada has a policy already in effect. Read More

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

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