Monthly Archives: May 2016

Portrait by Jonathan Worth

An Internet of Things that act like inkjet printers

Cory Doc­torow explains at O’Reilly’s OSCON (cov­er­ing open source tools, enter­prise, archi­tec­ture, infra­struc­ture, com­munity and more) in Aus­tin, Texas why the Inter­net of Things that includes DRM may not be the best option.

It may, in fact be the worst.

Cory is a sci­ence fic­tion nov­el­ist, blog­ger and tech­no­logy act­iv­ist. He is the co-edit­or of the pop­u­lar web­log Boing Boing, and a con­trib­ut­or to The Guard­i­an, Pub­lish­ers Weekly, Wired, and many oth­er news­pa­pers, magazines and web­sites. He is a spe­cial con­sult­ant to the Elec­tron­ic Fron­ti­er Found­a­tion, a non-profit civil liber­ties group that defends free­dom in tech­no­logy law, policy, stand­ards and treat­ies. He holds an hon­or­ary doc­tor­ate in com­puter sci­ence from the Open Uni­ver­sity (UK), where he is a Vis­it­ing Pro­fess­or; in 2007, he served as the Ful­bright Chair at the Annen­berg Cen­ter for Pub­lic Dip­lomacy at the Uni­ver­sity of South­ern California.


Hemingway (logo)

Do your headlines have a Beyoncé-level of engagement?

Like the lead para­graph in a news story or thes­is in an essay, your head­line is your one true sen­tence: the single most import­ant asset for cap­tur­ing atten­tion in the feed.

Hem­ing­way is Sharethrough’s new AI-powered head­line ana­lyz­er, an easy-to-use, pub­licly avail­able tool that puts a wealth of pro­pri­et­ary data sci­ence and lin­guist­ic ana­lys­is at your fin­ger­tips for the first time. This new tool is free for any­one look­ing to nav­ig­ate the new pres­sures and demands in con­tent mar­ket­ing, help­ing them ana­lyze and quickly improve the qual­ity of their head­lines, optim­iz­ing for both impres­sion and engagement.

Below are the intial res­ults for this art­icle’s head­line (pre-Bey­on­cé).

Hemingway (actual headline result)

Using this ana­lys­er, I was able to push my Head­line Qual­ity Score from 62 to 79%. I’m not sure adding Bey­on­cé improved your level of engage­ment after you arrived, but you clicked on the head­line though, did­n’t you? Appar­ently that’s 98% of the prob­lem solved.

How does it work?

The Head­line Qual­ity Score is based on a mul­tivari­ate lin­guist­ic algorithm built on the prin­ciples of Beha­vi­or Mod­el the­ory and Sharethrough’s neur­os­cience and advert­ising research. The algorithm takes into account more than 300 unique vari­ables, includ­ing EEG data and Nat­ur­al Lan­guage Pro­cessing, enabling your nat­ive ads to cap­ture atten­tion, increase engage­ment and deliv­er a stronger impression.

Basic­ally, it offers sug­ges­tions to improve click­throughs — but’s it not going to write bet­ter head­lines for you.

Back to work, you Hemingway-wannabe.


The GyroGlove from GyroGear

GyroGlove: Solutions can come from any perspective

Gyro­Glove is a glove designed to sup­press hand tremors caused by Par­kin­son’s dis­ease. Instead of using drugs to coun­ter­act the effect of the dis­ease, which have a finite lifespan and some­times sig­ni­fic­ant side effects, Joon Faii Ong (a med­ic­al stu­dent at Imper­i­al Col­lege Lon­don) worked with a team of engin­eers, design­ers and med­ics to cre­ate a glove that would dir­ectly sta­bil­ise the hands of someone suf­fer­ing from tremors, by using gyroscopes.

First nom­in­ated as a final­ist in the AXA PPP Health Tech & You Awards, and now on tar­get to launch at the end of 2016.

via and

The "Maschinenmensch" or machine-human (from Fritz Lang's Metropolis)

VR Storytelling as “Audience Experience”

To explore the audience’s exper­i­ence in VR, Karin Soukup and Alex­an­dra Gar­cia partnered with Stanford’s Media Exper­i­ments, the Nation­al Film Board of Canada, and inde­pend­ent film­maker Pais­ley Smith.

Using low-res­ol­u­tion “exper­i­ence pro­to­typ­ing” and extens­ively test­ing three basic scen­ari­os, they attempt to determ­ine the role of agency in VR storytelling. In doing so, they con­struct what may be VR’s first form­al dis­cip­line — “Audi­ence Exper­i­ence” (AX).

Their top five takeaways:

  1. Real­ity is con­struc­ted (once the audi­ence pokes a hole in real­ity, they have already fallen through it)
  2. Hav­ing a body means being some­body (there is no such thing as a neut­ral observer)
  3. Look­ing is doing (for bet­ter or worse, the audi­ence dir­ects their own gaze)
  4. 360° is less than 180° (the more there is to see, the less the audi­ence remembers)
  5. 360° is more than full circle (the more com­plete the envir­on­ment, the more it resonates)

Their con­clu­sion? VR storytellers should be “mata­dors”, mov­ing away from dir­ect­or towards influ­en­cer – wav­ing the red cape to show users where to look. To do this effect­ively, we need to know their emo­tion­al, cog­nit­ive and phys­ic­al exper­i­ence: hence the focus on audi­ence exper­i­ence.