Friday 5 — 1.10.2014

By General

  1. yahoo news itemIf you’re not shivering right now, perhaps you were at CES in Vegas this week. Among the loveliest of launches is Yahoo’s News Digest app, the fruit of its Summly acquisition a year ago. With this sleek app, Marissa Mayer is making good on her commitment to prioritize beautiful product. Yahoo is cleverly delivering not only well-designed mobile news, but the far more valuable editorial filtering via morning and evening digest editions (complete with a countdown clock to the next edition).
  2. Is it OK to admit we’re all getting overwhelmed by the endless stream of information? This article makes the case for more filters and bridges, and summarizes recent attempts to staunch the flow like nuking your Twitter feed.
  3. There’s been a saying for a while now — and Jonathan Zittrain takes a stab at its provenance here — that when something online is free, you’re not the customer, you’re the product. In a similar vein, this article asks if we will come to regret the myriad small decisions we make each day — opting into free products like social networks, email provider, file and photo storage in the cloud — where we don’t pay with money, but with our private data.
  4. Here’s a compelling argument for building online systems with empathy and not disdain in civic tech. It’s a great example of how digital strategy and communications are inextricable. The best digital platforms with stellar experience design, flawless cross-device rendering, and optimal performance become useless when impeded by content and communications that obfuscate rather then enable.
  5. How do African Americans have access to or use technology differently? Pew’s recent report finds that there’s a 12 percentage point gap in broadband adoption, but that African Americans are represented in roughly similar mobile numbers for cell phone and smartphone ownership. And the phenomenon referred to as “Black Twitter” may be backed up by these numbers: 22% of online African Americans use Twitter versus 16% of online whites.

Weekend fun: If you enjoy black humor, you may already have played Cards Against Humanity. If you’re concerned about the future of news and painful linkbait headlines, why not go play Headlines Against Humanity?

Every Friday, find five, highly subjective links about compelling technologies, emerging trends, and interesting ideas that affect how we live and work digitally.

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