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Gilbane Advisor 5-25-18 — GDPR, GDPR & ML, GDPR & adtech, Martech paradox

Our privacy policy & GDPR

Since the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) goes into effect today we lead with our own privacy policy, and our progress in incorporating GDPR requirements. We encourage you to read it. TL;DR: We do not yet claim complete compliance. But because we don’t depend on advertising, and don’t buy, sell, or share personal data to help others advertise, complying with GDPR is less daunting than it is for many others. Our privacy policy will be updated as we continue to add support for GDPR. Read More

How will the GDPR impact machine learning?

Since GDPR is bigger than Queen Bey, we’re all being bombarded by emails and articles about GDPR, ranging from the click-baity to the ill-informed to the wishful-thinking to the doomsday-wailing to the we-can-help, to the technically-bureaucratic, to the thoughtfully-analytical, und so weiter. We expect most of you by now have waded through enough to find a favorite or two to get a handle on the basics, so we’ve chosen two posts that deserve a careful read that you might have missed. First up, Andrew Burt, digs into the details and complexity of what GDPR means for machine learning. There is no simple answer, but Burt’s article is a good place to learn why. Read More

GDPR will pop the adtech bubble

It could happen. Note that Doc Searls is not talking about advertising in general, just adtech. But adtech is, shall we, say well-funded. Read More

And now a break from GDPR!​…

Martech simultaneous consolidation & expansion

How is this possible?…

… a more accurate view of martech consolidation cycles is that they are indeed happening  but they are happening on top of a wave of underlying software expansion… That underlying wave of software expansion seems to be overtaking

martech consolidation and expansion

the natural business consolidation dynamics that are absolutely still happening at the same timeRead 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 4-25-18 — deep learning value, martech size, no-click searches

Notes from the AI frontier: Applications and value of deep learning

In 2011 as the excitement about Big Data was becoming mainstream, McKinsey published what was the most useful early report for executives. Big data: The next frontier for innovation, competition, and productivity, took a smart and measured look at use cases and value across industries. Given the symbiotic relationship between data and AI / machine learning, companies who were paying attention and invested in Big Data then are likely positioned well ahead of others to benefit from today’s advances in machine learning technologies and techniques.

AI performance improvement by industry

McKinsey’s new report provides a knowledgeable overview using accurate terminology in their “… analysis of more than 400 use cases across 19 industries and nine business functions highlights the broad use and significant economic potential of advanced AI techniques.” Highly recommended. Read More

A flaw-by-flaw guide to Facebook’s new GDPR privacy changes

Josh Constine provides a useful take on the changes rolling out now to European users illustrated with screen shots. But I think it’s safe to say that whether they are meeting the “letter of the GDPR law” is still a matter for debate.

Overall, it seems like Facebook is complying with the letter of GDPR law, but with questionable spirit…Facebook struck the right balance in some places here. But the subtly pushy designs seem intended to steer people away from changing their defaults. Read More

Marketing Technology Landscape Supergraphic (2018)

Scott Brinker has just released the latest update to his famous “Supergraphic”. The number of marketing technology vendors continues to grow. As Scott puts it, “Water continues to flow into the martech tub faster than it’s draining out.” Check out his post on what it all means and to see/download the graphic and a spreadsheet. Read More

Uh oh, click counts count less

Click quality and measurement has always been a bit iffy. But the biggest challenge to click value yet may come from a combination of mobile trends and Google’s strategy of reducing the need to click away from the search results page. Rand Fishkin’s post, New Data: How Google’s Organic & Paid CTRs Have Changed 2015-2018, looks at some interesting numbers. Back to brand marketing banners?
No-click searches desktop vs mobile

Ultimately, I think this data shows us that the future of SEO will have to account for influencing searchers without earning a click, or even knowing that a search happened. That’s going to be very frustrating for a lot of organizations. 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 4-13-18 — GDPR, AI and content management, Chrome referrals

GDPR – a big deal for small publishers

“… think about this in relation to a new visitor. Someone that you have no prior relationship with… What data can you actually collect and use for that person? The answer is … nothing! … a first time visitor hasn’t done anything that could be considered consent, so you have nothing to work with.”

And you can’t use third-party plugins like ad partner scripts or social widgets that collect data. GDPR is complicated and how much of it will be interpreted is unknown.

Google forcing consent for GDPR
Thomas Baekdal explains why, and how, all publishers need to get started. Read More

The top 25 AI use cases for content management

What we used to call “unstructured data” is the raw material of content management, and this same raw material is where machine learning will have the largest impact. Kashyap Kompella has put together a list of use cases you’ll want to look at. Read More

Chrome’s Articles for You a major new referral source

Google Chrome’s Articles for You is an under-publicized feature of Chrome on both Android and iOS that is now the fourth most prominent referrer in the Chartbeat network (behind Google Search, Facebook, and Twitter). Even though Chartbeat is currently only tracking Articles for You referrals from Android and not from iOS, its Android referrals alone are now about two-thirds the size of all of Twitter (desktop, Android, iOS) in terms of the volume of traffic sent… Articles for You traffic grew a shocking 2,100 percent in 2017 — from driving 15 million visits per month to publishers using Chartbeat to 341 million visits per month.

There are lots of questions about how this works. Josh Schwartz reports on what he’s been able to find out. Read More

It’s time to rebuild the web

Most of what is written about this topic assumes radical decentralization and blockchain. But this won’t happen quickly even though there are lots of blockchain applications already popping up. The general problem is just too big, the user experience changes alone are daunting, and there are still technical challenges. Mike Loukides takes a thoughtful look at a simpler path. 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 1-30-18 — Molecular content, beyond bitcoin, ML data value, Facebook “platform”

Molecular content & the separation of concerns

The creation and management of content continues to increase in complexity as we need to design for nmachines in addition to n screens. Content Strategist Michael Andrews lays out why we need to move beyond, single sourcing and modular content.

Atom Design methodology by Brad Frost

Michael proposes an approach based on “molecular content” combined with the concept of the “separation of concerns”. A good read for anyone involved in content strategy. Read More

Beyond the Bitcoin bubble

As most of you know, the really interesting thing about Bitcoin is not the actual currency but the Blockchain architecture it is built on. And while we don’t cover financial technology, Blockchain is very much applicable to the information management technologies and applications we do focus on, for example in publishing or marketing. On a grander scale, a trustable distributed ledger of X that competes with or complements a trusted (or not) central authority of X has broad societal implications. One of these is the walled garden threat to the Open Web. And sure enough, there are serious efforts underway to build /rebuild a sustainable Open Web using Blockchain technology. Steven Johnson has written a non-technical article that provides an excellent explanation of what you need to know and why. Read More

Is your company’s data actually valuable in the AI era?

In the AI economy, the value of your accumulated data is limited to a one-time benefit from training your AI model. And the value of training data is, like oil or any other input, influenced by the overall supply — it’s less valuable when more people have it. In contrast, the value of your ongoing operational data is not limited to a one-time benefit, but rather provides a perpetual benefit for operating and further enhancing your prediction machine. Read More

Maybe Facebook should abandon the news feed altogether

Facebook has almost always wanted to be a platform, if not The Platform. Their recent shift away from news in their news feed back to mostly social interactions raises questions about their long-term future and what kind of platform they will be. John Battelle has an interesting suggestion. He admits it is a long shot, but his thoughts aren’t as crazy as he suggests his solution might sound…

What if Facebook *really* pivoted, and became a … truly neutral platform — an AWS for attention and identity, if you will. What if the company dedicated itself to a set of stable policies that encouraged other companies to tap into its social graph, its vast identity database, its remarkable engagement machinery? Read More

Also…

The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. More or less twice a month except for August and December. See all issues

Gilbane Advisor 1-16-18 — Open Web, Mobile Mesh, Machine Learning, AR

We’re back after our annual December break and looking forward to a year of consequential, if not yet tectonic, shifts in enterprise and consumer content strategies and applications. We’ll be closely watching how, and how fast, three major technology areas will drive these changes: 1) The tension between the Open Web and proprietary platforms; 2) Machine learning, in particular for unstructured data and mixed data; 3) New content types and uses — AR is here, but when will it grow beyond cute apps to serious industry breakthroughs? Each of these has the potential to dramatically re-arrange industry landscapes. Stay tuned!

A plan to rescue the Web from the Internet

André Staltz published The Web began dying in 2014, here’s how in the late Fall. It was a depressing post but there wasn’t much to argue with except an apparent ready acceptance of defeat. It is a good read, and for those familiar with the history, skim to the second half. Fortunately, he followed up with a post on a plan that already has some pieces in place. The plan “in short is: Build the mobile mesh Web that works with or without Internet access, to reach 4 billion people currently offline”. This is not a quick fix, and its future is not certain, but it is just the kind of bold thinking we need. Crucially, it recognizes the need for both open and closed systems. Highly recommended. Read More

A letter about Google AMP

More than other major platforms, Google has a stake in the Open Web and is largely supportive of it, Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) for example. And while they have been somewhat responsive to publisher concerns, there is reason to worry that AMP could end up as a wall for Google’s garden. There is a lot to like about AMP but ensuring it evolves in ways compatible with the Open Web is critical for Google and the health the Open Web. This succinct letter signed by a growing list of (mostly) developers has a couple of reasonable recommendations for Google to consider. Read More

What does the publishing industry bring to the Web?

The short answer is that the Open Web should not be limited to pointers to either walled gardens or proprietary applications. Complex collections of content and metadata that require or benefit from unique presentation or organization, in other words, documents, are too valuable not to be included as full Web citizens. Ivan Herman goes into more detail on the W3C blog…

Web Publications should put the paradigm of a document on the Web back in the spotlight. Not in opposition to Web Applications but to complement them. (Web) Publications should become first class entities on the Web. This should lead to a right balance between a Web of Applications and a Web of Documents as two, complementary faces of the World Wide Web. Read More

Does long-form content work in today’s small attention span world?

“Social media moves fast and rewards scrolling quickly past one message and onto the next. And mobile devices aren’t usually associated with spending long periods of time sitting and reading. It’s natural for people to assume these trends point toward a preference for shorter, “snackable”

long form content performance

content that can be consumed quickly… And yet, actual research looking into the issue of how content of different lengths performs doesn’t back up that assumption.” Read More

Also…

The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. More or less twice a month except for August and December. See all issues

Gilbane Advisor 5-19-17 — e-commerce, meta-platform, summarization and ML, design

E-commerce: What China reveals about the future of shopping

China’s e-commerce market is the world’s largest and fastest growing. It is also more mobile and more integrated with relevant platforms than those in the West, allowing for smoother customer experiences. This goes beyond WeChat e-commerce capability, the envy of western messaging platforms.

China's Digital Ecosystem - source BCG

There are reasons eastern and western e-commerce may continue to evolve differently. But there is a lot to learn from China’s experience. BCG and Alibaba dig in. Read More

Digital assistants drive new meta-platform battle

Bob O’Donnell riffs on the intersection of digital assistants, the voice interface, and platform value. This weeks’ keynotes at Google I/O, and last week’s at Microsoft Build both provide useful context to several of O’Donnell’s points.

… digital assistants … have the potential to completely devalue the underlying platforms on which they run. To put it succinctly, if I can use, say, Alexa across an iPhone, a Windows PC, my smart home components and a future connected car, where does the unique value of iOS or Windows 10 go? Out the door… Read More

Improving summarization with machine learning

That this would happen should be expected, especially after the dramatic improvement to machine translation due to ML. MIT Technology Review’s Will Knight reports on developments at Salesforce following their acquisition of MetaMind, which is what we point you to below. But you might also be interested in the more technical description of how the algorithm works — at least scroll down past the technical paragraphs to see useful sample results. Read More

Mobile First, Desktop Worst

Designing for an optimal user experience is extremely difficult even with a single screen because of the variety of media, layout, and use cases. Multiply the number of screens by n, and it seems like an impossible task. On top of this fiendish complexity, there are compromises to be made between developer objectives and brand directives. No wonder design is often dumbed down to be simply useable across devices rather than optimal. This may not be a solvable problem, though better tools, perhaps informed by machine learning, will certainly help. In the meantime, it pays not to expect too much from simple approaches. Read More

Gilbane Digital Content Conference
Call for Speakers Open

Content and digital experience technologies and strategies for marketing, publishing, and the workplace.

Proposal deadline is June 2 9 2017

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

Also…

Know what you’re getting… A marketer’s guide to the tricks and hacks of influencers via Digiday

Have Web Standards on Mobile Caught Up to Phonegap in 2017? A look at some specific recommendations via Telerik developer network

ICYMI, Scott Brinker’s latest… Marketing Technology Landscape Supergraphic (2017): Martech 5000 via chiefmartec.com

Not-science-fiction – thinking a bit ahead… Open Water – The Internet of Visible Thought via Edge.org

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

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
Gilbane Advisor logo

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 1-5-17 — Bots, Deep Learning, Mobile Marketing

Happy New year Dear Reader!

We have chosen a small number of the superabundance of end-of-year reviews and predictions to recommend, each focused on rapidly developing areas that are important for you to keep up with, even if at a high level. Topics include bots, deep learning, mobile, marketing technology, software development, and design.

Bot Check-In: A Year of Disappointment

Sam Lessin sums it up and explains.

Despite lots of PR, neither Facebook, Amazon or Google-developed bot platforms this year made it easy for developers to work with. Narrowly focused services can thrive in the near-term but mass-market bots have a way to go. Read More

Deep Learning 2016: The Year in Review

Jan Bussieck provides a really useful, not-too-technical, recap and look forward.

The many revolutionary results we have seen in 2016, be they in medical imaging, self-driving cars or machine translation also point to the fact that moving along the axes of data and compute power will lead to diminishing marginal returns… This means that the greatest yields can be reaped from pushing the third frontier forward, to develop algorithms that can learn from raw unlabelled data such as video or text. Read More

2016’s top programming trends

2016 brought many exciting developments in software and 2017 promises to be even better as containers and functional programming languages grow in adoption and JavaScript moves to become even more central parts of standard development practice. Read More 

Mobile is eating the world – 2016

Benedict Evans’ latest version of his well known presentation is not just about mobile but covers computing and market issues in the context of today’s dominant platform. The link provides access to both his slides and video presentation. Read More

2017 predictions for mobile marketing

In terms of industry headline value, possibly the two most intriguing mobile advertising developments in 2016 were perpetrated by platform operators: Google massively extended its suite of mobile advertising products and Apple introduced in-store search ads…

Eric Seufer provides three predictions for this year. Read More

Who controls the marketing tech stack in 2017: The CIO or CMO?

There are lots of workable options for collaboration. Dion Hinchcliffe suggests some scenarios. Read More

Also…

Keep up with design… Top 10 UX Articles of 2016 Announced via Nielsen Norman Group

And don’t forget… Content Structure in Tables via Story Needle

When Java shops grow up they become web companies or vice versa? via Redmonk

Speaking of software… Is it a good time to start a software company? via Sam Gerstenzang

What happens when everyone has a camera?… Cameras, ecommerce and machine learning via Benedict Evans

 

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

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