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The digital future - highlights from this weeks Digital Breakfast

London might have been carpeted in snow but that didn't prevent the last Digital Breakfast of 2010 being a well attended and very lively affair. Three speakers; Michael Nutley, Editor in chief of NMA, David Maher Roberts CEO of The Filter, and Mike Butcher, Editor of TechCrunch Europe, unveiled their vision of the future and sparked some fascinating debates along the way.

Nutley kicked the breakfast off by taking the audience through what he sees as the eight key trends that will shape the digital future. He predicted that social media would continue to grow and that business would learn to harness it to create customer communities.Nutley added though that brands would begin to place a very real emphasis on measuring how social media affected their business.

Another core trend for the next year that Nutley highlighted was the way in which after several difficult years brands would start to rebuild their relationships with media companies. He suggested that this might be powered by both brands and media companies utilising the huge amount of data that they can both generate to learn more about audiences.

Nutley finished by encouraging brands to experiment more both online and via mobile phones and tablet PCs.

Second speaker, David Maher Roberts, took the attendees through how the web has evolved and why data will become pivotal to its future. Maher Roberts, whose start up The Filter specialises in converting data into personal reccommendations for users. Maher Roberts explained how there were different types of web data; meta data (descriptions, trailers, images), contextual data (location, device, language), explicit data (when people ‘like' or prefer content) and individual taste (what a person consumes) and how they could be combined to deliver innovative products. He showed the attendees an app that the company has built for Nokia, which takes information about the user (location, what music they are playing on their phone etc) and then delivers news of upcoming gigs direct to the consumer.

Finally Maher Roberst argued that the online world needed to see data in a different way. ‘Information about information is more valuable than the information itself,' he said.

The third speaker, Mike Butcher chose to focus on what he sees as a key trend for 2011 - content curation - and its implications for publishing. Butcher defined curation as the way in which certain apps and websites delivered personalised publishing platforms by harnessing information from social media. He showed the attendees the recently launched paper.li website which takes a person's tweets and the tweets of the people they follow to create a personalised link-filled daily newsletter.

Butcher then cited a host of other examples of curation technology and warned that the technology was only in a formative state and would continue to become more sophisticated and effective.

Butcher admitted that he wasn't sure quite what impact the trend for curation would have on publishing, but added that both media companies and brands need to keep a very close eye on how it develops.

Posted in Digital
3rdDec 2010


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