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May 19, 2017 - No Comments!

‘Spotify Expands Its AI Arsenal for Better Music Recommendations’

Engadget has a brief article on Spotify's purchase of Niland:

Spotify's editorial selection and music discovery process are hard to beat (ahem, Google Play Music) and it might get a little better with the company's latest acquisition. The music streaming service has just picked up Niland, a Paris-based machine learning startup that focuses on music search and recommendations. "The team from Niland will join our New York office and help Spotify continue innovating and improving our recommendation and personalization technologies resulting in more music discovery, which benefits both fans and artists," a press release says.

As someone who's moved from Apple Music to Spotify soley because of Discover Weekly, it's good to see the company doubling down on recommendations. It seems inevitable that every platform which provides its user with media of any sort will find themselves gravitating towards 'discovery' as time goes on. We're at a point (and have been at a point for a long time) that there's simply so much out there, we could find a new favorite song or film or show at any moment. 

The fact that my Apple Music recommendations were so terrible—and that similar recommendations on services like Netflix and Hulu suffer the same lack of clarity—is a problem, and one that will certainly be solved eventually. Until then, I'll be on whatever service helps me find new things I love the most.

April 24, 2017 - Comments Off on Juicero and the Misplaced Anger of an Intuitive Internet Mob

Juicero and the Misplaced Anger of an Intuitive Internet Mob

Over at Extratextuals:

There was a story that took my Twitter feed by storm last week, and it was the tale of a tech company squeezed to death by its own hubris.

Juicero is ‘Keurig but for juice’, with their base product being a $400 machine that uses proprietary packets of diced vegetables and fruits to give you your fresh-squeezed-cold-press-juice fix on the reg.

The device is connected to the internet (because of course it is), and includes strange ‘features’ like the ability for the Juicero machine to scan a QR code on the back of their packets and reject one if its expired or perhaps recalled.

I remember reading about the Juicero when it was first announced a couple of years ago, and I thought it was pretty dumb. I still think it’s pretty dumb — juice has proven to be pretty subpar for your health, and even if it was good for you there’s little to be said about the value of this juicing machine over others which don’t, say, include proprietary technology which locks you in to a system.

So it was no surprise that the internet went wild when a news outlet features a story on the fact that the Juicero packets can be squeezed by hand, bypassing the expensive machine entirely. For a product that went above and beyond to espouse the incredible force their machine could exert on those pulped veggies, this can seem pretty infuriating.

Yet instead of finding myself laughing along with the rest of the crowd, I found myself disappointed in the mob mentality.

There’s a few reasons for that.

Read more.

February 16, 2017 - Comments Off on Coffman.Co


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