Archive for June, 2011

Twitter launches ‘Twitter for Newsrooms’ resource guide

June 27th, 2011

Twitter For Newsrooms

Twitter today introduced a new portal for journalists called Twitter for Newsrooms. The resource is similar to Facebook for Journalists, in that it offers best-practice advice and tips on how reporters can use the social media outlet in their day-to-day job.

The information portal offers a number of sections relating to various journalistic tasks: reporting, engaging, publishing and a section called “extra.”

  1. Under the reporting section, journalists learn about using search to its fullest potential. You can learn about in-depth advanced searching techniques and finding sources; Tweetdeck and Twitter for Mac; mobile tips; and how to use Topsy to find older tweets.
  2. Under the engage section, users can learn how to use Twitter to connect with audiences, share news and build community. This section includes case studies, tips on how to brand your Twitter presence and a glossary.
  3. In the Publish section, journalists are given tips on everything from a toolkit called Web Intents, to a WordPress plugin for Twitter, to official display guidelines on using tweets in media, and an image gallery of Twitter logos.
  4. Finally, in the Extra section, Twitter provides links to blogs, support/help items, DMCA issues and Twitter in other languages.

While a lot of these tips may be familiar to Twitter veterans, Twitter for Newsrooms offers a wealth of information for journalists who are just starting out on the social platform.

What do you think about Twitter for Newsrooms?

Craiggers: The better way to search Craigslist

June 27th, 2011

Craiggers

News about Craiggers first started hitting my radar in early May when ReadWriteWeb wrote about the website. Craiggers is a website that lets you search through Craigslist more efficiently using a better, cleaner interface. “Big deal, why are we trying to reinvent the wheel” you ask? Good question. That is exactly what I thought when I first heard about the service.

Thanks to Twitter, however, I have been getting constant reminders about Craiggers popping up in my social stream each week, and every single person who mentions it, raves about it.

So, I had to give Craiggers another look and I’ve come to the conclusion the fandemonium seems justified. It’s full of features you wished you had for years, but didn’t realize it.

So here are my top 5 reasons why this service is better than using Craigslist:

  1. The interface is dead simple to use, and looks good. While Craigslist has won the Internet for being a simple, reliable resource to find stuff, it’s never won any points for its design. Craiggers’ design breeds better usability.
  2. Items for sale can be viewed in a stream, similar to updates you see on Facebook or Twitter, with thumbnail photos and basic details visible on a single screen. I find this style of browsing easier to read and more efficient in getting to good content quickly.
  3. There are more, and better, filters to sort results. Sort by price (Craigslist also lets you do this), but you can also sort by date of posting, low to high (price), relevancy and more and the results all populate on one page. You can also change your search parameters without having to click forward or back or without having to open multiple tabs.
  4. You can save searches. Anyone who has been on the market for something but wanted to take their time to find it will appreciate this feature. Rather than having to visit Craigslist and type in your search query over and over each day, you can save your search and watch for updates. There is also an email notification feature where you get sent updates by email related to your search.
  5. You can set a favourites list so if you’re looking for something over a period of a few days, this acts as a bookmark so you don’t have to email yourself a bunch of links as a reminder.

Take this as example: I searched for a bike in Toronto, and here is what a regular search looks like on Craigslist and here is what it looks like on Craiggers. Spend a minute or two on each page, and tell me which one you would return to.

Next up: “Kijijiers?”

[Cross-posted to Digital Journal]

The beauty in Sony promo video for upcoming tablet

June 17th, 2011


Sony is gearing up to launch two tablets called the Sony S1 and the Sony S2, but not much is known about them yet.What we do know is that they are built on Android Honeycomb and the S1 boasts 9.4-inch screen, while the S2 is smaller with two 5.5-inch displays.

To tease about what’s coming, Sony has put together a five-part story called “Two will” featuring the Sony Tablet. In the first video, you get to see glimpses of the device but that isn’t what struck me as being impressive — the video itself did.In this video, we see a series of domino-like movement with steel balls moving along, knocking things over, before starting a small model train.

The idea is not new, but the way this video is shot is really striking, reminding me of a Tim Burton film. The lighting is captivating and the “episode” is a really unique way to generate buzz and build momentum around a product.

Good work Sony, this pre-launch video is well done. Not everyone agrees, but hey, that’s what opinions are all about.

Check it out embedded below and tell me what you think.