“Your smartphone likes message-based information. It doesn’t handle long, endless scrolling of data very well. So, the first thing we looked at is how do we disaggregate information and then put it back together?”
In January 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the first iPhone and boasted that his company, Apple, intended nothing less than to reinvent the phone. A decade later, devices like the iPhone make it possible to access the internet using mobile phone networks and touchscreen technology. In 2017, smartphones rule the world.
The speed of technological development at the beginning of the 21st century has outpaced our human ability to absorb the change. We have landed in a new world and have barely begun to explore it.
But like any environment, the smartphone world has rules – rules that publishers must learn, says Maxwell Riggsbee, chief product officer at Gadget Software, a mobile publishing platform developer. The new reading that is coming to dominate our media world, he says, must be complemented by a new kind of publishing that helps readers discover information in a blizzard of data.
“This medium has really changed the way in which users – readers – interact with content. Perhaps the biggest thing here is selectivity – our ability to pick out the pieces that we want [to read], perhaps at times even share those pieces or organize them in a new way, and deliver them out to an audience that we ourselves may be creating. This bidirectional nature and always-on connectivity of the smartphone is really changing our relationship with content,” Riggsbee says.
“When we decided to take on this mission to understand how to bring dense or complex content to the smartphone, the first question we had to ask ourselves is, ‘How does the smartphone even want to interact with that?’ The conclusion we came to is that it really wants to work in very small, atomic pieces,” he tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally. “Your smartphone likes message-based information. It doesn’t handle long, endless scrolling of data very well. So, the first thing we looked at is how do we disaggregate information and then put it back together?”