Hi, please

Google just won’t go away! Check out “Living Stories”

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Google buddying’ up with the New York Times and the Washington Post has been quite the experiment.  I wonder if this will have a huge impact on the way people will read online news as this program aggregates and integrates news information into one thread while keeping you up-to-date on what’s developing with the story.  Now it’s open source so let the games begin ;)

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  1. nadine 20:06, Feb 22nd, 10

    What a service! I will definitely use Living Stories when it gets out! Unfortunately, the stories on their experimental page aren’t updated anymore. What comes next?
    Do you know if other newspapers will participate?
    It reminds me a little bit of the time-line and background information features that BBC.com offers, you could eventually do a comparison. I haven’t spotted any video or audio material, although the NYTimes offers them on their homepage. I’d also like to get a “citizen journalism” section. By the way, have you noticed that CNN launched iReport? http://www.ireport.com/

  2. HoniehLayla 20:54, Feb 22nd, 10

    Whatever happened to people reading an article from beginning to end? This validates the idea that most people are only aware of the headlines that are occurring and not the actual full story.

    I am most definitely someone who would indulge in this service because:

    1. It’s quick
    2. It’s easy
    3. It updates for me
    4. Has a timeline
    5. Uses reputable sources (ie: New York Times)

  3. ElzbthMllr 21:46, Feb 22nd, 10

    This is so interesting, I had no idea about this service. When did it start? I think it hits on several key points several of which Honieh mentioned. It’s seems to have the user friendliness of a site like Wikipedia, linking to other parts of the story that are interesting like background etc. Yet it comes from reputable news sources. This tends to be the bane of online news stories, it’s so hard to figure out where information is coming from, but here you know it’s verified. I wonder if they have plans to expand it to other established news sites?

    I also notice how many of the technology that allows this to function (RSS feeds for example subscribing for updates etc) are relatively well established. Google just seems to be really good at aggregating information and data and presenting it to its users in a timely way. It’s interesting that once the content is there, there are ways to distribute it to readers. There could be some important lessons relevant to the future of journalism debate.

    I haven’t used this service yet obviously since I didn’t know about it, but I will try it out in the next few weeks. I think I’ll try it both on subjects that I’m familiar with and ones that I’m not as familiar with, just to get a sense of whether I notice any difference.

  4. Juliette 21:55, Feb 22nd, 10

    I think Google has developped a very interesting tool cause most of people are overwhelmed by the load of information they are receiving on a daily basis. I would definitely use it.

    However, I am wondering how they will regulate the up date on the information. For instance what are they going to prioritize : releasing the last update asap or wait for checking the reliability of the news? Are they going to limit their information sources’ to the NY Times and The Washington Post? Also don’t you think that people risk to loose the big picture of the news by to focusing on the “living stories” they follow?

  5. Ryan 00:39, Feb 23rd, 10

    @ Honieh – I think to put it simply – “time”. We live in an even faster pace society where we want the meat and potatoes or we are too impatient to spend time reading the whole article. Instead we want it now – we want a summary or just tell me the main point. The danger of this is that we can miss the important details that are embedded within and around the informational meat and potatoes. I’m very much like you – cut the B.S. and give me the main point.

    Good point.

  6. Leslie 09:50, Feb 23rd, 10

    Hey Ryan- Living Stories looks really cool, but Google isn’t actually updating the site anymore, right? It’s just open for others to use and play with? I wonder why they decided to do this? I was reading an article yesterday about the “Google News” page and how it can help newspapers and the potential to monetize: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=122838. I wonder if maybe Google wanted to focus on this, and put Living Stories aside?

  7. Alexandra 12:06, Feb 23rd, 10

    Wow. I have to say, it looks a little complicated. Does that make me sound old-fashioned? I’m sure if I used it, it would make sense. I will be interested to hear what you learn next time, especially more about how the partnership between Google and the NY Times plays out.

  8. niharika 14:06, Feb 23rd, 10

    While I agree with Ryan and Honieh that Living Stories could help us save time and give us updated information in an instant, I have to also wonder like Juliette, whether we would be losing the big picture and the little details that sometimes make up certain stories or current events. It will be interesting to see how this plays out over time, especially if more news sources were added on ….

  9. mushon 11:17, Feb 27th, 10

    By a quick look at the updates page on the Google Code repository (http://code.google.com/p/living-stories/updates/list) it seems like the work done in the past week or so has been focusing mainly on documentation and minor bug fixes. It seems like the main thing happening with the project now is that it’s being handed over to the community. I think it will be really important to find out how invested are people outside of Google in making this happen. I would say try to track down the latest contributors and try to get their take on these issues. They will probably know better than anybody else what’s going on. One way of doing that is by joining the developers list, looking through the archives and asking some questions there. If there’s development, there’s also a developers list. (I would say it is likely to suspect the other way round too)