Product & Startup Builder

Filtering by Category: "attention management"

Particls in the Wall Street Journal

Added on by Chris Saad.
Thanks to Jeremy Wagstaff who has written up a great piece about Lifestreaming, Attention and Particls Attention Management.

He writes:
"Attention plays a complex role in this new world. Google quietly makes money from the data we unconsciously give out when we do anything online. But then there are the data we consciously put out when we post photos to Flickr, add a post to our blog, or send stream-of-consciousness messages to services like Twitter. Put all this stuff together and you have an "attention stream," painting a picture of what we are paying attention to during our day."

He goes on to explain Particls' role in the Attention Economy.
"Particls ( looks simple enough: a downloadable ticker that runs across the top of your screen, pumping you information. Nothing new about this; the difference lies in what information it presents, and how it appears. Instead of shoveling data at you, Particls tries to figure out what you're paying attention to."

Thanks for your intense curiosity in researching this story Jeremy and the great review of Particls.

Head on over to the WSJ site and read the full thing.

iPALS - Identity, Presence, Attention, Location, Status

Added on by Chris Saad.
Sam Sethi posts a fantastic post about Twitter, Attention and Information Overload.

He refers to Twitter as a great conversation tool to help reduce the friction and increase the pace of innovation by bringing participants closer together.

Some, however, have given Twitter credit for killing the aggregator and becoming the ultimate tool for incoming alerts and information.

Both Sam and I disagree.

He writes:

I think we are getting closer to the point in time where our social networks, search & discovery engines and the semantic web combine to provide us with said relevant timely information based on our current location, attention and status.

Sadly Twitter is not the answer, it is just another example of us trying to acquire better information faster from our trusted social network. In fact Twitter is just another disorganised stream of information for us to manage.

While Twitter helps to lower the barrier to getting a message out fast, it does not help you route incoming messages particularly effectively.

Think of Twitter as the outgoing pipeline. What's needed is an incoming pipleine. One into which we can put our Twitter stream, our friend's lifestreams, our favorite authors and the applications we track and through which we can route messages based on a number of criteria.

Sam describes these criteria as iPALS:

In the future to help us manage this vast array of data that has overloaded us with information, I envisage us trusting online services where we share our identity, presence, attention, location and status - i.e iPALS in exchange for timely relevant information

Well I’m Sam Sethi (identity) sat at my desk using my PC (Presence), whilst listening to Paul Weller, (Attention) writing this post, at home in sunny Cookham Dean (Location), but I’m busy so don’t disturb me (status). i.e iPALS

I love it. The pieces are emerging. It is now time to stitch them all together.

  • Identity = OpenID + hCard
  • Presence = Does anyone know a definitive Presence service?
  • Attention = Jaiku (An aggregation of all your Attention data from Twitter and beyond)
  • Location = Plazes
  • Status = Anyone know a definitive status service?

So if we combine these services, we have what Sam calls an iPALS application. I call it Attention Management. Whatever it's called - it's the personalized incoming pipeline of your life.

We also like to call it Particls.

Touchstone in your referrer stats - Audiences of One

Added on by Chris Saad.
People have started to notice Touchstone in their referrer logs. So I thought I would write a little about it.

I don't think anyone will ever see a 'Digg Effect' style mad rush from Touchstone. So we probably wont make headlines that way.

So what does a referrer from Touchstone mean?

I think it means something significant. Maybe even more significant than the Digg effect. It means that your article got through the Touchstone Personal Relevancy filter of our Attention Management Platform and connected with at least one person.

One person might not sound like much, but consider that one person after another might turn into hundreds and thousands. Consider also that each of those people are intimately interested in what they came to see.

Not only that - but the user clicked through (despite seeing your headline and synopsis) from inside the Touchstone UI.

With this in mind, Touchstone traffic could become a great measure of your sites ability to intimately connect with audiences of one - people just like you. People that might want to buy what you are selling.

Dave Winer - Are you Paying Attention?

Added on by Chris Saad.
Dave Winer just made a post that could not be more perfectly written if I had paid him large sums of money to endorse Touchstone. So... Dave, if you don't mind - I am going to quote this post of yours everywhere...

He says:

[...] Most RSS readers remind the user, all the time, how wrong he or she is. Or inadequate or lazy or behind in their work. [...]

[...] Think about it this way. Suppose you read the paper every day. What if at the top of the paper it told you how many articles from previous issues you hadn't read. Whoa. When you subscribed to the paper did you mean to imply that you would read all the articles?
Emphatically: News is not email. Unlike email, every article is not necessarily something you should read, or even look at. [...]

[...] Let the news flow by you and relax like someone sitting on the bank of a river looking for something interesting as you while away the time. That's how news works, and RSS is, emphatically, for news.

Try this one out. Imagine you're fishing, and there was some nerd on the other side of the river, shouting at you, the number of fish that went by that you didn't catch. How long before you'd want to kill the nerd?? [...]

Well Dave, I have good news for you.

Nowhere on the Touchstone interface do we count how many unread items you have. We do not have any 'mark folder as read' either.

News flows over you via a news ticker and popup alerts (or your own personalized RSS feed, or SMS etc).

In fact, we pride ourselves not by how many items we display but rather (using our clever Attention Profiling Technology) how many items we suppress because it knows the article doesn't rate based on your interests.

The only number our new build will display, in fact, is how many hours we have saved you by NOT showing you the items you wouldn't have cared about in the first place.

Because News is Not Email.

I said it ages ago, and now the man who popularized RSS agrees with me.

I think mainstream users understand the temporariness of news far better than us geeks and they will understand Touchstone far better than a full-screen, email/newsgroups type feed reader.

Touchstone declared "Closest to being an Attention Management System"

Added on by Chris Saad.
The Burton Group recently released a report in their series on "Collaboration and Content Strategies".

Specifically this report covered "Techniques to Address Attention Fatigue and Info-Stress in the Too-Much-Information Age" which compares approaches, products and services for Attention Management in the enterprise.

Touchstone was reviewed as part of the vendor lineup. Here are some excerpts.

"[...] The concept of a hub-and-spoke architecture for processing messages and applying attention rules can be found in Touchstone (currently in alpha release) [...] Touchstone is the product on the market that is closest to being an attention management system [...] Touchstone is a useful example of how to specifically target the attention management problem and we look forward to following its development. The company expects to ship the product in early 2007."

I won't give away the ending for them - but suffice to say Information Overload is a significant and growing problem.

I'd like to thank Craig Roth and his team for their hard work in compiling this report to raise awareness of the growing Information Overload problem. We look forward to evolving Touchstone to maintain its position as the platform of choice for the Attention Management issues he outlined in his report and supporting APML for cross-vendor/application compatibility.

You can purchase the report from the Burton Group.

Update: There is a great podcast from Craig about the report and Attention Management themes in general. No mention of Touchstone here but he does describe the problem in simple to understand way.