How Apple's voice-recognition software got its start—and how it lost some of its power along the way:
"This Siri -- the Siri of the past -- offers a glimpse at what the Siri of the future may provide, and a blueprint for how a growing wave of artificially intelligent assistants will slot into our lives. The goal is a human-enhancing and potentially indispensable assistant that could supplement the limitations of our minds and free us from mundane and tedious tasks.
"Siri's backers know Apple's version of the assistant has not yet lived up to its potential. 'The Siri team saw the future, defined the future and built the first working version of the future,' says Gary Morgenthaler, a partner at Morgenthaler Ventures, one of the two first venture capital firms to invest in Siri. 'So it’s disappointing to those of us that were part of the original team to see how slowly that’s progressed out of the acquired company into the marketplace.'"
PUBLISHED: Jan. 23, 2013
LENGTH: 22 minutes (5556 words)
A father in Spain laments the lack of a future for his daughter in their home country:
"Like many young people her age, my daughter was caught by surprise upon completion of her professional training. In the spring she returned to Spain with the intention of looking for a job here -- it didn't really matter what, as long as she could 'do her thing.' She got a few interviews, but the conditions that were offered to her always seemed to be abusive: a mere salary, 400 € a month, for a person with a bachelor's and a master's degree, who speaks four languages, and who has worked abroad. Such salaries aren't enough to eat or rent a room in the cities where they're offered. She would have needed help from her parents -- something we were willing to do. But our daughter didn't want to keep being dependent on us -- as this support would in fact subsidize the same employers that are taking advantage of our young people.
"This summer, many of her friends stopped by the house to say goodbye. Their conversations always came down to the same thing: the depression of the crisis, layoffs or fear of layoffs, companies that take advantage of the crisis to impose unfair conditions, laying off a good part of the workers so that 'supervisors' end up doing everyone's part of the job, intimidated by the threat of being let go. It seems to me that they feel guilty, and maybe they are somewhat responsible -- as we all are -- but not for the excessive burden we've unloaded onto them."
PUBLISHED: Oct. 8, 2012
LENGTH: 7 minutes (1790 words)
The complete origins story of the Huffington Post. How Arianna Huffington, Ken Lerer and Jonah Peretti first connected, and how they turned the company into a media empire, and now Pulitzer winner:
"In the course of a few hours, Peretti would watch with wonderment as Arianna Huffington eased herself from setting to setting, all the while making the person she was talking with feel like the most interesting and important person in the world, hanging on every word, never shifting her attention to check one of three BlackBerries. 'I loved being a gatherer,' Huffington would later say. 'I don’t really think you can make gathering mistakes.'
"Peretti saw this talent through a different prism. 'Arianna,' he says, 'can make weak ties into strong ties.'"
PUBLISHED: April 16, 2012
LENGTH: 39 minutes (9931 words)
Inside the social media factory created by former Huffington Post cofounder Jonah Peretti—how they've cracked viral content, invested in original content, and made money:
"At around 5 p.m., Stopera published '48 Pictures That Perfectly Capture the ’90s' on BuzzFeed. 'These pictures are all that and a bag of chips!' he wrote at the top of the list. A BuzzFeed visitor with an appetite for ’90s nostalgia could scroll down, gawk at the 48 retro images, read the deadpan captions, recall Bob Saget, Tipper Gore, and Scottie Pippen, laugh at the crazy fashion, and resurface to the present day in a matter of minutes. It racked up 1.2 million page views."
PUBLISHED: March 22, 2012
LENGTH: 12 minutes (3208 words)
The site's internal numbers show that page views for October were up just 6 percent, to 83.6 million, and unique visitors were down 21 percent -- growing pains as the site weans itself from longtime traffic teat MSN.com and develops its own, more clicky readers. Over the same time period, Gawker has more than doubled its audience, and the Huffington Post has a global readership roughly three times as large. Through October, the Daily Beast racked up publicity with long, will-they-or-won't-they talks of a merger with Newsweek. When media people talk about the future of publishing online, in other words, they don't talk about the site with the 12-year-old CMS.
PUBLISHED: Nov. 10, 2010
LENGTH: 9 minutes (2304 words)
A lot of what we're seeing online today is actually a return, full circle, to the way things were when American newspapers began; a mixture of advocacy and investigative in-your-face journalism. There is a long and distinguished history of such newspapers—from the papers that were fiercely loyal to Jefferson or Hamilton, to the abolitionist broadsheets, to the activist newspapers at the turn of the century. As my partner Arianna Huffington says, the mission of journalism has always been "truth-seeking, not striking some fictitious balance between two sides." And anyway, who can doubt that it's always been important to give consumers what they want.
PUBLISHED: April 24, 2009
LENGTH: 18 minutes (4573 words)
Dish is her capital—the means by which she makes connections and maintains them. Because she defines the agenda for the Huffington Post, which defines the agenda for so many readers, passing a tidbit her way is, in a sense, an investment. Proprietary hints are the dividend. “She knows the best of everything, from the best person to do yoga with to the best person to do your facials,” Laurie David, the environmental activist, said recently. “If you need anything, you ask Arianna.”
PUBLISHED: Oct. 13, 2008
LENGTH: 41 minutes (10375 words)
"And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, 'Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!'"
PUBLISHED: Aug. 28, 1963
LENGTH: 6 minutes (1728 words)