Archive for blockchain

Gilbane Advisor 3-6-18 — What’s open, why decentralization, blockchain for publishing, breakthroughs

Why decentralization matters

Chris Dixon has a really useful post explaining the intense interest in decentralized cryptonetworks and why he thinks they will drive a return to a more open internet less dominated by the major platforms. His post is short, clear, accessible, and a great starting point for strategic discussions.

Platform dynamics | decentralization

The 140+ comments are useful as well but keep in mind there is a natural tension between centralized and decentralized networks in the same way there is between all proprietary and open architectures — there is a role for each and a tendency for one or the other to dominate at different points in time and usefulness. There are also different types of decentralization which can too easily be conflated. Read More

The meaning of open

Google’s Alex Komoroske digs into the tension and interplay between open and closed systems in a thoughtful piece that is a good companion read (not a response) to Dixon’s piece on decentralization. In the context of what it means to be open in general, you’ll get some insight into Google’s thinking about the balance between their own platform components and being part of the open web. Read More

The next platform for media and makers

Jarrod Dicker, who you may know from the Washington Post, Time, Huffington, and The RebelMouse content management system, believes it’s time for a blockchain-based platform for content creators and publishers. Dicker just left the Post to be CEO of Blockchain startup Po.et. This will be interesting to watch. Read More

10 breakthrough technologies 2018

MIT Technology Review’s annual list is always worth reading. It comes as close to a carefully curated and neutral list as you’ll find. And while their broad coverage means not all the technologies will have a near term impact on your business decisions, they are likely to be “technologies that will have a profound effect on our lives.” Read More

Also…

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. See all issues

Gilbane Advisor 2-16-18 — Marketing & AI, publishing & AR, blockchain & media, IoT

How is AI disrupting marketing?

An excellent summary from Scott Brinker on the current/near-term reality of “AI” marketing applications. “…here’s the irony: as much as the hype has overstated what AI

Overhyped Marketing Buzzwords | chiefmartec.com

might do formarketing in the next 12-24 months, the reality of how AI is already working in marketing today is often under-recognized.” Tis true. Read More

The NYT is boarding the AR train — here’s what that means for storytelling

One of the areas we’re paying attention to this year is the use of AR content for serious enterprise applications and truly useful consumer use cases. In the case of publishing, The New York Times, Quartz, Axel Springer, and others, are experimenting with how the unique characteristics of AR content can enhance customer experiences rather than distract. As powerful as the AR promise is we don’t know how news consumers will react to the extra, more active, effort involved. But it’s time to find out. Read More

How blockchain could kill both cable and Netflix

Not this week, but there is keen interest in using blockchain technology to build decentralized peer-to-peer content management and distribution applications. There are a number of these kinds of projects planning to go live this year. Rizwan Virk describes much of the collective vision and potential disruption. A good place to start learning more. Read More

Smart homes and vegetable peelers

Andreessen Horowitz’s Benedict Evans doesn’t have a unified vision of the future of smart homes, but he does have some ideas and lots of enlightening questions. In this post he looks at smart home ecosystems and questions smart thing use cases, market dynamics, platform roles, integrations, and how we’ll interface with them. He remains “extremely skeptical” of voice as a new major platform, and rightfully so. This a must read for anyone building or investing in products or businesses around smart things – not just for the home. Read More

Also…

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. See all issues

Gilbane Advisor 8-23-17 — Health data computing, PWAs, blockchain & syndication, don’t “get started”

iPhone health-computing hub

CB Insights found a new Apple patent for an “Electronic Device That Computes Health Data”. The examples use an iPhone, but the patent covers any computing device with “a camera, an ambient light sensor, and a proximity sensor”. This covers Apple’s current main products, and will certainly cover future versions of some of their wearable products.

Apple patent Electronic Device That Computes Health Data

Needless to say, a combination of integrated Apple devices computing health data in concert, in addition to communicating with third party devices and apps, is a powerfully flexible hub environment. This model plays to Apples strengths, is applicable to other IoT applications, and suggestive of future strategy.

When Apple launched the watch I argued that the watch was meant to be a general-purpose computing device, and as such the most likely successor to the iPhone, and that health would be a focus because “fitness is a great way to enter into the much larger healthcare opportunity, which in turn provides an environment to learn about new user experience

technology and the complex device integration and data sharing necessary for it, and other complicated applications of general purpose computing.” The other candidate is glasses, but we’ll see. In any case, the devices will be working together.

In the meantime check out this patent. Read More

Health care – it’s about the data

Health care data includes much more than individual and aggregate tracking. How the data is analyzed, used, and shared, by patients, providers, and payers provides an even larger opportunity to improve care and reduce costs. In spite of the challenges caused by proprietary health data systems — which still seriously need to be dealt with — there is some encouraging activity. For couple of examples Read More here, and here

Apple signals it’s willing to let next-gen web apps compete with iOS apps

Translation: Apple is adding support for “Service Workers” to WebKit, which means that Safari will be able to support Progressive Web Apps (PWAs). PWAs, developed by Google engineers to allow mobile web apps to better compete with native apps are supported by Google, Mozilla, Opera, and Microsoft browsers and appear to be a hit with developers. This support is obviously important for both Apple customers and the open web. Read More

Introducing the news business’ first “initial coin offering”: Ethereum to the rescue?

Blockchain, in the abstract, can do for content supply systems what it is touted to do best: speed up supply chains. By making more transparent all the steps with the content origination, permissioning, pricing and billing reuse chain, it presumably may speed the business of syndication sales. Read More

“Get Started” stops users

Get Started buttons and other ambiguous calls-to-action can degrade the user experience and should be avoided… This button is often the most prominent and enticing call-to-action on the homepage, and can appear to be the right path for nearly every activity a user is looking to complete… But when this button lands naïve users into a complex flow instead of providing them with the basic information they expected, people lose trust and become annoyed with the site. Read More

Also…

Origin is critical context… Distributed and syndicated content: what’s wrong with this picture?  via W3C.org

In three weeks Amazon’s 1-click Patent is Expiring via the Hustle 

In 2017, the one thing every digital-native news outlet needs is a newsletter (not an app) via NiemanLab

Is it really either/or?… Personas vs. Jobs-to-Be-Done via Nielsen Norman

Fun… Hill for the data scientist: an xkcd story via livefreeordichotomize

The Gilbane Digital Content Conference

The Gilbane Digital Content Conference is focused on content and digital experience technologies and strategies for marketing, publishing, and the workplace.

Conference: November 28–29
Workshops: November 30
Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel

 

Frank Gilbane’s Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. More or less twice a month. See all issues

 

Gilbane Advisor 3-14-17 — voice, wearable machine learning, chinese CX, blockchain

CX and the age of the appacus

This Economist article about fintech in China is important not just for economists or financial technologists, but for customer experience professionals. China is “far and away the biggest market for digital payments, accounting for nearly half of the global total”. Beyond digital payments, there is Chinese fintech support throughout the ecommerce ecosystem, for investing, consumer lending, and small business last mile distributors, reducing friction and increasing market channel and consumer reach. The arguably superior CX of the ecommerce ecosystem already at scale in China makes lots of western ecommerce experiences look creaky at best.

Many of you are familiar with attempts by Facebook Messenger and other messaging apps to become platforms in the way that WeChat has in China. But success will require going beyond a simple transaction bot to a more complete integration with the full ecosystem. Western ecommerce ecosystems have a different set of challenges, but China is experimenting and learning a lot quickly. Studying the massive scale and rapidly evolving Chinese experience will no doubt provide valuable insight. Read More

economist china and clickaholics

Voice and the uncanny valley of AI

As part of our recurring ‘right tool for the job’ theme, we point you to Benedict Evan’s analysis of the notion of voice as the next platform.

This tends to point to the conclusion that for most companies, for voice to work really well you need a narrow and predictable domain. You need to know what the user might ask and the user needs to know what they can ask… You have to pick a field where it doesn’t matter that you can’t scale. Read More

The blockchain will do to banks and law firms what the internet did to media

Banks and law firms may face the most existential disintermediation threat, but all corporate strategists need to think about the potential impact of blockchain technology. MIT’s Joi Ito, Neha Narula, and Robleh Ali enlighten. Read More

The potential for blockchain to transform electronic health records

Lot’s of potential here. Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and MIT Media Lab describe their pilot program. Read More

On-Device machine intelligence

“What if you want machine intelligence to run on your personal phone or smartwatch, or on IoT devices, regardless of whether they are connected to the cloud?” You can… Read More

machine learning on your watch
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Gilbane Digital Content Conference

Mark your calendar! Call for papers coming soon.

Conference: November 28–29, 2017
Workshops: November 30
Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel, Boston, MA

Also…

A little fun… Metaphysics of the Marketing Hub via Gartner

Helpful how to… Comparison Tables for Products, Services, and Featuresvia Nielsen Norman Group

Want to understand estimates from your developers?… The Software Engineer’s Essential Time Estimation Guide via Hackernoon

It’s not easy… As Messenger’s bots lose steam, Facebook pushes menus over chat via Techcrunch

The case for digital reinvention The effect on revenue and profit and why. via Mckinsey

Solves multiple problems for them… Forbes rebuilt its new mobile website as a Progressive Web App via Nieman Lab

Last but not least… I invented the web. Here are three things we need to change to save it via The Guardian

Frank Gilbane’s Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. See previous issuesSubscribe to email or feed. Contact.

Gilbane Advisor 1-27-17 — Apple Facebook dance, platform battles

The Great Unbundling

We’ve seen the different ways the internet unbundled print and music. TV is evolving, or at least unbundling, more slowly. Ben Thompson has been tracking this for some time. In his latest look he focuses on TV and how Facebook, Snapchat are contributing to its unbundling. This is not just about commercial TV but video and advertising in general. Read More

Speaking of video, just as Facebook is starting to pushing long form video…

Parse.ly finds users not that engaged with video

Parse.ly examined the performance of four types of posts within its network of 700 sites: long-form, short-form, video, and slideshows. Read More

engagement time performance by content type - via Parse.lySlide by Parse.ly 

The iPhone Unsung Sine Qua Non

Telecommunications companies have historically been masters of control, and their tight grip has often slowed down their own, and other industries’, progress. While Apple has some control issues of their own, their wresting substantial control from the carriers has opened up huge opportunities not just for them, but for everyone. Control, however, is never a permanent state, and shifts are often unforeseen.

In retrospect, the ascendency of Smartphone 2.0 and the way it has shaped our culture seems obvious and natural. But the celebration and contemplation overlooks a crucial Sine Qua Non, a necessary (but not sufficient) condition: Unlocking the carriers’ grip on handset specifications, marketing, and content distribution. Read More

​Speaking of control…

The coming war between Apple and Facebook

Facebook has been phenomenally successful in mobile advertising. But they have long chafed at their dependence on the dominance of the only two mobile platforms that matter, Apple and Google. All three companies are jockeying for platform, content, and advertising control. Mobile marketing strategists need to track this, and Eric Seufert provides a rewarding deep dive that focuses on the Apple Facebook dance. Facebook is hoping messaging can replace operating systems as a more level platform battlefield. Read More

Speaking of messaging apps as platforms…

Tencent launches ‘mini programs’ for WeChat

WeChat is still leading the messaging-as-platform push and are who to watch first. Even though they “only” have some 800 million users in China they may lead in engagement time. WeChat ‘mini programs’ compete with Google ‘instant apps’, all app stores, and of course Facebook Messenger and other messaging products. Read More

Blockstack’s Vision to Reinvent the Web for Better Privacy

Based on blockchain technology as you might guess. The approach is one to watch and there are many companies working on it.

…instead of needing to create accounts with each site, as people do with Google or Facebook, users of sites built on Blockstack’s system will control their own digital identity (or identities). To use a site that needs your information, you will grant access to a profile under your control alone. If you want to stop using a service, you can revoke its access to your profile and data and take it elsewhere. Read More

Also…

On Their Tenth Anniversary, Mobile Apps Start Eating Their Own and of course are also threatened by ‘mini programs’, ‘instant apps’ and bots. via Flurry Analytics

On Medium 1: Jessica Lessin… What Everyone Is Missing About Media Business Models via The Information

On Medium 2: Frederic Filloux… A New Model for Medium via Monday Note

Would be fascinating to have comparable survey of U.S citizens… 70% of Europeans Aren’t Willing to Sacrifice Privacy for New Services, Survey Reveals via Tripwire 

I love quiet, but there is a cost. Think about this… Our Silent Future via The Information

Businesses are people too! and deserve a good CX and DX… Measuring B2B’s digital gap via Mckinsey

The Gilbane Advisor curates content for our community of content, computing, and digital experience professionals. Subscribe to our newsletter, or our feed.

You Have Content. Now What?

You’re running full-speed ahead with your content bucket full and your heart bursting with the need to share it with the world. But, you may need to hit the breaks for a moment and think about the tools needed to help you move forward in a way that will deliver the best digital experience to your customerGilbane conference attendeess.

Register now to join us for the Gilbane Digital Content Conference’s Track T: Technologies for Content, Marketing, and Digital Experience, and make sure you’re on the path to success. This track is designed for technology strategists and executives focused on near-term and future software for creating, managing, and delivering compelling digital experiences across platforms, channels, and form factors.

Technology track sessions include:

Click each session for a detailed description and list of speakers, then, check out our site for even more!

Register with code F16G to save an extra $100 off the Early Bird rate of your conference pass.

Register Today

The Venue

Gilbane conference hotel 2016The Fairmont Copley Plaza is the official conference hotel for the Gilbane Digital Content Conference 2016.
Discounted guest room rates (plus applicable taxes) have been arranged for attendees who book by November 11, 2016.

Find out more…

Gilbane Advisor 1.20.15

Don’t Try to Be a Publisher and a Platform at the Same Time

Or at least think it through very carefully.

Also, do you really want to be called a “platisher”?

Making these hybrids work over the long term is difficult, because their incentives work against each other. Toward the end of last year, one of the first platishers, Say Media, announced it was selling off its publishing properties to focus on its technological platform. CEO Matt Sanchez explained the decision to jettison its publisher properties as an inability to do both tech and content at the same time:

The conclusion we’ve come to, and one lots of media companies wrestle with is, do you build brands or do you build platforms? Those two are just completely different world views. It’s hard to create clarity for an organization. Read more

Speaking of platishers…

A mile wide, an inch deep

Ev Williams on metrics and value…

Medium had its biggest week ever last week — or so we might claim. By number of unique visitors to medium.com, we blew it out of the park. The main driver was a highly viral post that blew up (mostly on Facebook). However, the vast majority of those visitors stayed a fraction of what our average visitor stays, and they read hardly anything.

That’s why, internally, our top-line metric is “TTR,” which stands for total time reading. It’s an imperfect measure of time people spend on story pages. We think this is a better estimate of whether people are actually getting value out of Medium. By TTR, last week was still big, but we had 50% more TTR during a week in early October when we had 60% as many unique visitors (i.e., there was way more actual reading per visit). Read more

Biggest news of 2014

In computing that is, or better, general computing.

Horace Dediu’s choice may sound surprising at first, but what are the competing candidates? (See next item.) Wearables and IoT are moving fast but it is not their year yet. Read more

What Just Happened? (in 2014)

Well here are some other candidates from Fred Wilson. First mentioned:

1/ the social media phase of the Internet ended. this may have happened a few years ago actually but i felt it strongly this year. entrepreneurs and developers still build social applications. we still use them. but there isn’t much innovation here anymore. the big platforms are mature. their place is secure. Read more

​And now, for a sort of different take on this…

A Teenager’s View on Social Media

Written by an actual teen.

As others have pointed out this is one view and not market research, but it is a considered piece and you may find it strikes a chord with teenagers and non-teens you know. In any case social media is certainly a marketing challenge, and for this demographic in particular. This is also a handy cheat sheet if you don’t know how these social networks differ. Read more

Technology’s Impact on Workers

email on top? seriously?

You bet, but naturally you’ll want to know more. First the demographics:

…1,066 adult internet users, 18 years of age or older. The survey included 535 adults employed full-time or part-time, who are the basis of this report. Read more

Marketing Technology Landscape Supergraphic (2015)

There are at least 1876 marketing technology companies. How can this be?

Last year Scott Brinker’s landscape included 947. If you’re a marketing technologist you might need a raise… Download the graphic and Read more

There’s a blockchain for that!

The code that secures Bitcoin could also power an alternate Internet. First, though, it has to work.

Not all of you will want to invest in this read-more-than-once piece, but it is a good example of the kind of unexpected development strategists and analysts looking ahead need to keep an eye out for. Read more

The web is alive and well

Rumors of the web’s death are being greatly exaggerated, again.

There is a legitimate debate about how we use the terms “apps” and “web”, but also a lot of uninformed pronouncements about a web death spiral. Quartz has a short, accessible post on some aspects of the confusion.

… framing the question as the web vs. mobile is a fallacy that misses the more interesting changes that occur when more devices and more people get hooked up to the web. Read more

 

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The Gilbane Advisor curates content for our conference community of content, computing, and digital experience professionals throughout the year.