We're in a New Year, and it's time for the first edition of "Nick's Great Information Friday," my weekly curation of the best posts and links in film, television, technology, and all the things I follow. I promise, this will be the last installment filled with other people's lists. Going forward, of course, we have to put up with all the damn awards!
THE LAST OF THE 2011 LISTS
- If you've been following my blog lately, you'll know that I've written "best-of" posts for television, books, software, and now movies, with the last of the four coming out as late in the year as I could make it in order to include pictures from the December glut. This post gives you links to all four sets of reviews.
- Anyone can make their own list (including me), but these guys curate a list of the best lists. I like it, notwithstanding the source: a quirky website called Crabby Golightly.
- To review the best sci-fi and fantasy books of 2011 from ion9 ("We come from the Future") here's a good list -- not my prime genre, but worth a look.
- Check out “A Year in Transmedia,” Simon Staffans’s free ebook colllection of posts about the emerging t-m field, including an interview with your truly : download here.
- The best of 2011's tech writing is collected for your consideration by Thomas Houston at The Verge.
- The Guardian offers "the top 50 iPad apps."
THE LAST OF THE PREDICTIONS
- The Next Web offers its own tidbits in "What 2012 Holds for Online Media."
- Book-obsessed website The Millions posted a very informative rundown of the most anticipated books of 2012.
- Fortune's "Guide to the Future," notwithstanding the sheer grandiosity of the headline, is a useful predictive wallow, highlighting a few trends I hadn't considered.
THE MOVIE BIZ
- Amid the predictable hand-wringing over the predictable year-end bad news about movie box office, The Wrap's editor Sharon Waxman jumps in with some obvious and sensible advice, and renews her call for "bold" moves by the studios in digital (WB's acquisition of Flixster? "come on, I said bold!" sez Waxman.)
- Meanwhile, serial entrepreneur and start-up guru Steve Blank slugs Hollywood a bit harder in his post "Why the Movie Industry Can't Innovate and the result is SOPA." Truthfully, Blank does a great job of showing that Hollywood doesn't innovate, but doesn't really tell anyone why they can't. It's a good read, nonetheless.
- The Atlantic's Derek Thompson dives deeper into Hollywood's business model by asking "Why Do all movie tickets cost the same?"
- Indie Producer Ted Hope spotlights a cool infographic that displays virtually all possible film distribution options.
- IndieWire blog THE PLAYLIST itemizes its 50 most anticipated films of 2012
THE TV BIZ
- Want a quick gloss on the Changing TV Landscape? Go no further than this lovely infographic, covering the dawn of digital broadcasting (2009) through social TV.
- Deloitte puts some numbers to the cord-cutter chatter.
- Broadcom chip to be introduced at CES would embed a host of "over-the-top" functions in next-gen set-top-boxes alongside regular cable channels, reported in some tech detail here.
- Reports are that reality-TV king Mark Burnett taps his scepter upon social TV start-up ACTV8.
- BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield claimed this week that Nielsen viewing data proves that Netflix is the 15th most-watched TV "network" in the U.S., and is second in Netflix homes.
- Mobile Content Ventures hooks up with MetroPCS to deliver next generation of live mobile video. In related news, TV Technology looks at the evolving television experience, with a look at ConnecTV, another MCV initiative that seeks to bring TV to the tablet. The consortium of TV station groups and networks has an ambitious agenda.
LITERARY & READING
- Speaking of curating, VentureBeat has compiled a really neat list of 2011's best tech-oriented "long reads" -- itself an interesting trend, e.g., countering the web's relentless info-snack quality with major explorations of interesting topics that were once the province of "quality" magazines. I had seen only a few on this list before.
- Small press Tin House has reissued a really wild book called "Plotto: the Master Book of All Plots" a 1928 anthology that runs down 1,462 possible plots. Evidently studied by Hitchcock, no less.
COMPANIES & START-UPS
- Can newspapers be tech incubators? asks this interesting GigaOm report.
- "A Web of Apps" offers a quick gloss of new apps that help with the challenge of discovering content.
- Iconic blue chip company Kodak teeters on the brink.
- With potshots coming fast and furious over the new Yahoo CEO, Fast Company posits that Scott Thompson, the company's fourth top exec in five years, could turn the stodgy web giant around by concentrating upon turning its tonnage of "big data" into gold.
- Never heard of Path? It's the buzzy "new" social network that offers a cozier alternative to Facebook.
- Marshall Kirkpatrick gives an unqualified rave to curation tool "Storify" because it personifies an important trend of providing context from the tonnage of information.