Curated for content, computing, and digital experience professionals

Tag: open web (Page 1 of 2)

Automattic invests in open decentralized comms ecosystem Matrix

Automattic, the open source force behind WordPress, WooCommerce, Longreads, Simplenote and Tumblr, has made a $4.6M strategic investment into New Vector — the creators of an open, decentralized communications standard called Matrix. New Vector also developed a Slack rival (Riot) which runs on Matrix. Matrix is an open source project that publishes the Matrix open standard for secure, decentralised, real-time communication, and its Apache licensed  reference implementations.

New Vector’s decentralized tech powers instant messaging for a number of government users, including France — which forked Riot to launch a messaging app last year (Tchap) — and Germany, which just announced its armed forces will be adopting Matrix as the backbone for all internal comms; as well as for KDE, Mozilla, RedHat and Wikimedia, and others.

https://vector.imhttps://matrix.org, h/t: Techcrunch

 

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 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 2-15-17 — Apple and Web Standards, Gen Z, AMP links, Cognitive Overhead

Next-generation 3D Graphics on the Web

Thanks to Benedict Evans for noticing this. From his newsletter:

Apple proposed web standards that give web pages access to the smartphone (or PC) GPU to run ‘general purpose computation’ (i.e. machine learning) as well as graphics. Very surprising – I’d have expected this from Google or Facebook rather than ‘everything should be an app’ Apple…

This is good news for the open web, and I don’t find it surprising at all. The open web is under attack from many directions, but it is not going away even in an all mobile world. The question is its relative share with proprietary channels, and neither Apple, Google, or Facebook knows just how that will evolve. The article is a bit technical. Read More

Marketers note… Gen Z Rising Fast

Millennial entrepreneur Brit Morin…

… lately, I’m beginning to feel like I’m no longer part of the popular crowd at school. The focus has shifted to a new group of kids in town: Generation Z. … Last year, I sat in on an internal strategy discussion at a Fortune 500 beauty brand where the CEO spent 30 minutes discussing this new generation; the term “millennial” seemed to be used in the past tense. … Gen Zers are more diverse than past generations in both psychographics and demographics, and can’t be reached by traditional business tactics.

And to think how far behind so many companies are even providing a good mobile experience! Read More

Google makes it easier to see and share publishers’ real URLs from AMP pages

This is an example of the ongoing tug of war between platforms and publishers for control over content. This is not a war someone wins, but a long sometimes painful rebalancing. This concession addresses a big concern about AMP, but will it be enough to attract a critical mass of publishers? Read More

Cognitive Overhead is Your Product’s Overlord

No one intends to build a product with large cognitive overhead, but it happens if there isn’t forethought and recognition for it. “We saw the value being added with Flock’s predictive abilities — and a small group of users really loved them — but it was a cognitive maze for the rest of the world,” says Lieb. “The moment you assume people understand the value you’re adding — especially when it’s a new concept — you dive into cognitive overhead territory.”

David Lieb has some interesting, perhaps counter-intuitive, ideas for navigating this problem. Read More

Software Startup Markets Raising the Most Capital in 2017

Hopefully some validation rather than a surprise for investors, startups, and of course analysts. Read More

Software investment 2017

Also…

The best kind of case study… A Year of Running a SaaS “Side Business” via Priceonomics

So many big data opportunities… The Greatest Public Datasets for AI via Startupgrind

One example, but what is the future of app stores? Making More Outside The App Store via the Rogue Amoeba Blog

A little geeky but fun… Amazon is eating the software (which is eating the world via Hackernoon

A slightly subversive way to research Technical Leadership Indicators via Winton Technology Blog

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

Gilbane Advisor 4-28-16 — Bots vs apps, content management news, media, more

Bots vs apps, conversational interfaces, AI — lots of hype, and lots of money. If all the coverage of these and how they relate have left you scratching your head our first three articles below will get you grounded in reality.

The first, a longish but enjoyable post by Dan Grover is my favorite. He uses the sneaky trick of measuring how many screen taps chat interfaces can take compared to app interfaces to sort of measure physical, mental effort, and time. As a product manager at WeChat Grover has a certain cred.

Bots won’t replace apps. Better apps will replace apps

The thesis, then, is that users will engage more frequently, deeply, and efficiently with third-party services if they’re presented in a conversational UI instead of a separate native app. … messenger apps’ apparent success in fulfilling such a surprising array of tasks does not owe to the triumph of “conversational UI.” What they’ve achieved can be much more instructively framed as an adept exploitation of Silicon Valley phone OS makers’ growing failure to fully serve users’ needs, … Many of the platform-like aspects they’ve taken on to plaster over gaps in the OS actually have little to do with the core chat functionality. Not only is “conversational UI” a red herring, but as we look more closely, we’ll even see places where conversational UI has breached its limits and broken down. Read More

Chat bots, conversation and AI as an interface

Chat bots tap into two very current preoccupations. On one hand, the hope that they can actually work is a reflection of the ongoing explosion of AI, and on the other, they offer a way to reach users without having to get them to install an app.

Benedict Evans explores both, and asks many questions about how they relate to which “runtime”. Read more

When do bots beat apps? When context and convenience matter most

Investor Peter Rojas makes similar points and reminds us in case we forgot…

Facebook isn’t just wagering that the ease of interacting via a conversational interface will drive uptake of chatbots amongst its 800 million users. Ultimately they’re doing this because they believe that the convenience of chatbots will get people to live inside Messenger in the same way that WeChat users live inside that messaging app. It’s their way of making an end-run around both iOS and Android as app platforms by bringing all those services within Messenger as chatbots — and thus onto a platform which Facebook controls. Read More

Google search engine baffles public, Ofcom study shows

The Financial Times chose to highlight the gem below, no doubt because of the increased regulatory attention, but the free just-published, Adults’ media use and attitudes Report 2016has lots of other interesting findings.

In Ofcom’s research, adults who use search engines were shown a picture of the results returned by Google for an online search for “walking boots”. The first three results at the top of the list were distinguished by a small orange box with the word “Ad” written in it. … However, in spite of the labelling, 51 per cent of respondents were not aware that these results were adverts or sponsored links.

Imagine the results from some other other countries. Read More

Your media business will not be saved

The Verge’s Joshua Topolsky tells colleagues and competitors not to fool themselves with individual silver bullets. We’ll have to stay-tuned to see what he is working on.

Video will not save your media business. Nor will bots, newsletters, a “morning briefing” app, a “lean back” iPad experience, Slack integration, a Snapchat channel, or a great partnership with Twitter. … Compelling voices and stories, real and raw talent, new ideas that actually serve or delight an audience, brands that have meaning and ballast; these are things that matter in the next age of media. Thinking of your platform as an actual platform, not a delivery method. Knowing you’re more than just your words. Thinking of your business as a product and storytelling business, not a headline and body-copy business. Thinking of your audience as finite and building a sustainable business model around that audience — that’s going to matter. Thinking about your 10 year plan and not a billion dollar valuation — that’s going to matter. Read More

With new roadblocks for digital news sites, what happens next?

Newsonomics’ Ken Doctor, looking at the current recalibration, points out…

The Digital Dozen — those national/global companies I’ve identified, like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Bloomberg, AP, Reuters, The Guardian, Axel Springer, the BBC, and more — are most mindful and respecting of that heritage and mission, even as they struggle mightily. They, too, are testing more video, but they try not to let the new overwhelm their essential reasons for being. Read More

Making Medium more powerful for publishers

Aggressive…

new branding tools that will allow publications to customize color, layout, and navigation. … making it easier to migrate existing blogs and websites to Medium … two new ways that publishers can opt in to earn revenue on Medium … soon launch compatibility support for Facebook Instant Articles and Google Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) … brought collections to the web. Read More

The open web is not going away

Hopefully not! Zack Rosen points out the giant discrepancy in the funding of walled gardens vs open web, but he only gets to “should not” instead of “is not”. If you are an optimist you’ll be happy to know that there was a similar scenario in the 80s where giant telecoms tried to force a walled garden on the world in the form of the ODA (Office Document Architecture) standard, but lost the war to the measly-funded open information standard SGML (parent of HTML and XML). Another similarity: some of the large computer companies at the time hedged their bets by supporting both sides to some degree, much like Google, Apple, Facebook do today. Read More

Gilbane Digital Content Conference

The call for speakers deadline is May 6!

Main conference: November 29 – 30 2016 ● Workshops: December 1 ● Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston, MA

Short takes

It’s Mr. MR to you… The Untold Story of Magic Leap, the World’s Most Secretive Startup via Wired

Understand the Blockchain in Two Minutes Well, slightly over 2, but this really pretty good. via Institute for the Future

The web is Doom but there is reason for optimism. via mobiForge 

Not a short term problem but, hmmm… Facebook Struggles to Stop Decline in ‘Original’ Sharing via The Information

Are MarTech tools underperforming? Digital Marketing Technology Survey Results via Real Story Group

CMS, etc., corner

Details and puns but No Joke: Sitecore is (finally) acquired (sort of) via Digital Clarity Group

Adding to their extensive collection of CMSs OpenText acquires HP customer experience content management for $170 million via TechCrunch

New, and free, Research: From Web Publishing to Experience Management in Higher Education via Digital Clarity Group

CrownPeak merges with ActiveStandards and raises funding via Real Story Group

Digital Asset Management Round-up, April 2016 via Digital Clarity Group

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

The Gilbane Digital Content Conference – Content Management, Marketing, and Digital Experience helps marketers, IT, and business managers integrate content strategies and technologies to produce superior digital experiences for customers, employees, and partners.

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