Well, it’s been a while since I posted anything here. To be honest, that’s because no one single thing has fired my attention in such a way to generate a post, but it’s probably worth summarising the random things which have interested me, if only as a means of getting back into the groove on this blog (if you’re interested in tracking what I note on a daily basis, my del.icio.us feed is here).
start.com and Google front page: both of these feature beautiful interfaces for feed tracking. These screens, and Jarvis’ post on “feedthink”, have just confirmed for me the whole underpinning of digital consumption which has been in place for, ooh, about five years now (!) is shifting around us. Which leads on to….
Ads in RSS. Will Yahoo!’s entry into contextual advertising move the whole ads in RSS conversation on? Because I’m still getting the feeling that this market isn’t so much untapped as virtually ignored… And Google isn’t exactly helping by trying to patent some of the key technology behind it.
But RSS is clearly growing at great guns. Denver Post have launched their own RSS reader, a customised version of NewsGator, and I’m told apocryphally that there were 25,000 downloads in the first few days.
Newsroom changes. The NYT’s memo on newsroom integration has, of course, sparked conversations here at the Guardian. No detail on what the conversations are as yet, but I found this contrarian view about integration very interesting.
Om Malik seems to be starting a one-man campaign to raise awareness on spamming in the blogosphere, pointing out both the apparently lunatic growth in blogs and the gaming of tags on Technorati. While I don’t necessarily agree with him, I do think the momentum to date behind tagging and “blog web services” powering things like Technorati has depended to some extent on the goodwill of the users in the community, and that now these systems are attracting marketing dollars a tragedy of the commons may ensue (though I do agree a cornucopia of the commons may be just as likely). And I’m also interested that Jason Calacanis and Yahoo! seem to be separately gunning for Technorati, in that they both perceive a need for robust and wide-ranging indexing of blog conversations.
TV broadcasting continues to fragment, with the news that the BBC is now streaming its news programmes live online, and that Champions League broadcasters must now show matches live on the Web as well. However, their decision to stream the content in narrowband format to non-UK users is just a sidestep away from the elephant that’s still lingering in the BBC’s room: the fact that this content is paid for by British licence fee payers but consumed by everyone worldwide. Can the BBC become a genuinely global content provider and still keep the licence fee? The jury’s still out.
So lots going on all over the place. Oh, and we’ve launched a beta of our new search engine. Check it out, and give us feedback. And Fox did some big deal which got a little bit of coverage. I’m not even going to try to analyse that one, other than to ask: if you’re worried about being in a bubble, can you really be in one?