A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘internet

[LINK] “Are Digital Magazines Dead?”

leave a comment »

My reaction to Ryan Jones’ article republished in Wired was something like “Are digital magazines actually a thing at all?” (Are they?)

When pondering the future of digital magazines, the “I’m not dead yet” scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail may come to mind. Is the digital magazine industry ready to be carted off with the rest of the dead? Gregg Hano, CEO of MAG+, wrote a great piece pointing out the fact that we are actually just in the infancy of digital magazines. Digital magazines at the moment only represent a small portion of total magazine circulation, but their subscriber base doubled from 2012 to 2013 (AAM semiannual periodical snapshot report). Coincidentally, there is a rise in the number of digital magazines published each year, especially in international markets.

It is often forgotten that the digital publication industry has only been around since 2010. This should come as no surprise considering it is also the birth year of the modern tablet industry. As is to be expected with any emerging market, it takes several years for the pioneers of the digital magazine age to develop an earnest understanding of the underlying technologies. At the same time, digital magazines are far less static than traditional publications, given the devices they are viewed on and the intimacy of the user experience. Understanding how to properly produce content for such a new, yet familiar medium has been an exercise in passion and patience requiring a set of skills that takes years to develop.

Digital publications must also deal with a number of barriers that other publishing avenues have never encountered. Unlike their print counterparts, these publications have to abide by the consumer uptake of a small subset of digital devices. A mere 3% of the US population owned a tablet following the initial iPad release in 2010. In the first part of 2013 that number approached 34% (Pew Research Internet Project). The barriers for digital magazine distribution are thus decreasing. At the same time digitizing platforms are broadening the scope of where digital magazines can be published, such as within websites and on smartphones.

Written by Randy McDonald

October 23, 2014 at 10:45 pm

[LINK] “As Online Viewing Soars, Internet TV Will Soon Be the Only TV”

leave a comment »

Wired‘s Marcus Wohlson predicts the collapse of broadcast television.

More people are watching TV online than ever—a lot more. Viewers may not be cutting the cable cord altogether, but growth in the number who want to watch TV over a different set of pipes is surging, according to a new report from Adobe. If anyone was still wondering why HBO and CBS plan to offer an online-only option, the trend is clear: the internet is where people want to watch. In more and more homes, online TV isn’t a geeky novelty, a sidelight to the traditional version. It’s just what TV looks like now.

Adobe is in a position to know because its software runs the platform that nearly all US cable customers use to log into the online versions of their subscriptions, according to the company. Researchers tracked 165 online video views and 1.53 billion logins over a year, and they found that total TV viewing over the internet grew by 388 percent in mid-2014 compared to the same time a year earlier—a near-quintupling. And the increase is more than just a few diehards binge-watching: the number of unique viewers well more than doubled, growing 146 percent year-over-year.

Eventually cable will follow bunny ears into the basement of dead technology, and online TV will be called something else: plain old TV.

According to analyst Tamara Gaffney, three factors are drove this growth: more apps and sites for watching, more content to watch on those apps and sites, and the World Cup. Sports act as as kind of “appetizer” whetting viewers’ appetites for the flexibility and breadth of online TV, Gaffney says. The World Cup was an especially strong lure because the internet was the only way to watch so many games that traditional TV lacked the bandwidth to show. But Gaffney said once viewers came for sports, they stayed for everything else.

“Households generally connect because of sports,” she says. “But then when they start to use online television, they start to branch out.”

Written by Randy McDonald

October 23, 2014 at 10:42 pm

[BLOG] Some Monday links

leave a comment »

  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly describes the collapse of an online community she quite liked.
  • Cody Delistraty links to his article in The Atlantic about the benefits of multilingualism.
  • The Everyday Sociology Blog considers the numbers and implications of low-wage earners.
  • The Frailest Things’ Michael Sacasas links to articles about big data, suggesting ways in which it undermines our sense of self-control.
  • Geocurrents considers alternate history maps.
  • Marginal Revolution notes that West Germany had high inflation in the 1970s and 1980s.
  • Otto Pohl thinks pan-Africanism can start by creating uniform electrical plugs.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer considers alternate histories for Mexico, paying particular attention to the idea of a smaller Mexico after 1848.
  • Spacing Toronto’s John Lorinc argues John Tory bested Olivia Chow by not being over-specific.
  • Torontoist notes the travails of a girl who became an amateur hockey player in the mid-1950s.
  • Window on Eurasia considers how Russian liberals could return Crimea, deconstructs the alleged Chinese threat, and notes a startlingly anti-Russian press conference delivered by Belarus’ Lukashenko.

[LINK] “How to mark the 20th anniversary of the Netscape Navigator?”

leave a comment »

Colby Cash’s article in MacLean’s marking the 20th anniversary of Netscape Navigator is a delight.

The Netscape Navigator web browser celebrated its 20th anniversary this week. For many of you, Netscape will have been the first browser you used, and was therefore your first introduction to ubiquitous digital connectedness. This, in turn, means it was probably responsible for a permanent change in your neurology and in the essentials of your lifestyle. Which seems worth observing—or mourning, according to your view of it.

When I say “Netscape,” of course, your instinctive reaction is probably to recoil at the memory of crude, dead technology. You think of four-digit baud rates, image files loading with agonizing slowness, and the raspy scream of the old-fashioned modem. But Netscape, practically speaking, probably changed your life much more than changing religions or cities or even spouses would.

Even if you are a literal hermit who has never come within five metres of a computer, you have some relationship to the browser and its consequences: It has altered politics, decided elections, changed regimes, reshaped the economy, exploded and reassembled the media, transformed the news. The children raised with (within?) the browser will have consciousnesses we cannot comprehend. They will live according to axioms, and on the basis of expectations, that are foreign to us, and that would be foreign to every generation of humans that has hitherto lived.

Written by Randy McDonald

October 17, 2014 at 2:04 am

[BLOG] Some Friday links

leave a comment »

  • blogTO looks at what the Financial District was like in the 1970s and 1980s, recommends things to do in Little Italy, and has ten quirky facts about the Toronto Islands.
  • Centauri Dreams notes simulations of how solitary stars like our own Sun are formed.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper noting that evidence of a planetary system outside our own was first gathered in 1917, from a spectrum taken of Van Maanen’s Star. It was only a matter of no one recognizing what the spectrum meant.
  • Marginal Revolution notes a study of filesharing services suggesting that rich countries tend to see music downloads while poor ones download movies.
  • The Planetary Science Blog takes a look at the discoveries of Dawn at proto-planet Vesta.
  • pollotenchegg maps changes in industrial production in Ukraine, noting a collapse in rebel-held areas in the east.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer compares the proposed Home Rule that would have been granted to Ireland in 1914 with current proposals for Scotland.
  • Torontoist notes that despite population growth nearby, the Redpath Sugar Factory will be staying put.
  • Towleroad notes that Estonia has become the first post-Soviet nation to recognize same-sex partnerships.
  • Why I Love Toronto recommends Friday night events at the Royal Ontario Museum.
  • Window on Eurasia suggests that the collapse of Russian civil society is a responsibility of Russian citizens as well as of their state.

[BLOG] Some Friday links

leave a comment »

  • blogTO notes a projection suggesting there will be nearly seven million Torontonians by 2025.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper examining how
  • The Dragon’s Tales links to a paper examining a very unusual planetary system around a subdwarf B star and fears the Russo-Ukrainian war will heat up again.
  • Language Hat examines the nearly extinct dialect of Missouri French.
  • Marginal Revolution wonders about the impact of big data on the criminal justice system and argues Neew Zealand might have the best-designed government in the world.
  • Torontoist shares the 125 years of history of the Gladstone Hotel.
  • Towleroad notes that gay asylum seekers in Australia might be resettled in anti-gay Papua New Guinea.
  • Transit Toronto notes the expansion of wireless Internet to College station.
  • Window on Eurasia predicts that the European Union and the United States will try to engage Belarus while accepting the dictatorship.

[NEWS] Some Sunday links

  • Al Jazeera notes the quilombos of Brazil founded by escaped slaves and looks at the strength of the separatist vote in Scotland’s largest city of Glasgow.
  • Bloomberg notes continuing tensions between North Korea and Japan over Japanese abductees, looks at Russian state subsidies to sanctions-hit companies, suggests a softening of Polish foreign policy versus Russia, and notes how Johannesburg is flourishing as gateway to Africa despite high crime and inequality.
  • The Bloomberg View notes separatist concerns depressing yields of Catalonian and Spanish bonds, and wonders if Gujarat’s industrial economy might serve as an example for all India.
  • CBC notes that national newspapers are no longer being sold in Yellowknife, looks at the case of an Iroquois girl refusing chemotherapy, and notes that the Angelina Jolie effect boosting breast cancer screening endures.
  • Open Democracy examines Catalonian separatism, looks at India’s changing Palestinian policy, considers trends in ideology in Hungary, wonders if Jordan will be next to succumb to the Islamic state, and examines anti-Syrian sentiment in Lebanon.
  • Wired examines teletext and notes the strength of China’s Alibaba.
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 378 other followers