We Say, twittertalk

A second version of the first experiment. In this window you can sort Twitter messages on certain words. Try to work with two words or use the more obvious words like McCain / Obama if you want to use more words. Otherwise you won’t get any results.

Another great polling service
Erik Borra created a polling service based on what people say on Twitter. With the service you get results on what people say they voted on Twitter. I’m trying to make a bar graph for this.


Automatically generated profiles?

Tracking tags
This image shows the most popular tags connected to the articles I have read today

The coming weeks we will be further updating the news website. The last weeks we have added interesting things on the database level and back-end of the system. Now it is time to bring some of those ideas to the front-end.

One of the things we have done is making tags more important. After using and testing with it we noticed the combined tagging methods we use give a very interesting and relevant database with tags. The tags have more value and semantic relations than I thought they would have. has over 35.000 articles in its database with over a 100.000 tags, 10.000 of those tags are unique.

What we have added is a system that tracks the tags of the articles you read. With this information a metadata profile is created. New articles that enter the site will be matched to your ‘profile’ and if there is a match this will be a recommended article. There is also a tag relation mechanism to create a more semantic relation.

We will do the same for your friends, since news is part of a social experience. We are adding groups as well. If you have online friends using the website, you and your group of friends creates a semantic profile as well. New articles will be recommended that fit to your group of friends.

Your profile
What about this tag based profile based on what your read? The profile could be private or hidden. It could also be open or even exportable. For example could connect to web services and get the highest rated and most recent blog posts about subjects you like and recommend these to you. Or you could connect the information to other profiles to create a more rich or enhanced experience on other platforms as well.

Would you like to take this profile? And can you think of a service that could serve you better when it has a collection of news themes and subjects you like?

Concept design personalized frontapage
The concept design for the frontpage. The page automatically orders the information based on what is most relevant in general and for you.


The future of press agencies

Middle Man cover

This week AP urged/forced bloggers to use ‘guidelines‘ set by AP when quoting articles. As you might expect this instantly burned all AP’s credits in the blogosphere.

Why? Why would AP be afraid about people copying parts of their articles and linking back? Haven’t we passed this station with newspapers before?

I think there might be a more structural problem for press agencies. Their customers are changing. Most of these agencies are created by newspapers. Combine journalism efforts and save money. But the web is famous for taking out the middle man. In this case the news websites.

Agencies like AP, Reuters and AFP are they source of news. The speed of publishing and access to information that we as consumers demand can do perfectly without a middle man. Press agency news is no longer an article that gives a journalist information to start writing his or her version. What a press agency publishes is the definite version.

Just take an AP headline and Google it.

What’s the problem?
What’s the real problem? Is AP afraid paying customers (news media) will start complaining because they (the agencies) are taking over the online conversation.

Press agencies are the source. And in a web where information is free to move and to be duplicated the source is the most important place.

What’s the future for press agencies? This question is equally important as the question about what the future of newspapers is. In todays news landscape press agencies are leading. Is their future (partly) in serving customers directly? Press agencies are facing changes, but what will be their new business model?

Image found on this forum by Jonny Crossbones