A buzz balloon about Yahoo’s CES appearance and new product unveiling has been building and building, and now it has popped, raining tiny chunks of news stories (“atoms”) on the heads of tech journalists everywhere.
It’s not a disappointment, provided you were searching for yet another way to consume news in 2014.
The product is Yahoo News Digest, an app that will deliver two newsletters, likely full of articles you’ve already seen five or more times on Twitter and Facebook, to your phone each day. The articles will be summarized in bits and pieces nicknamed atoms, according to Yahoo’s blog.
Quaintly, the aggregated missives will come in the morning and evening, “in a rhythm that mimics the way people once read morning and afternoon newspapers,” Product Manager Nick D’Aloisio told the Verge in an interview.
What on God’s green Earth is the point? Well, the folks at Yahoo figure reading news from the Internet or watching the news on TV is not as satisfying as reading a newspaper cover to cover, because there’s no sense of accomplishment or completion.
They’ve got a point, tbh. The Internet literally never ends. So they’re hoping the News Digest, which consists of links curated by a mix of algorithms and human editors, will provide users with the sense of satisfaction that reading a newspaper does.
The app “helps you get on with your life,” Mr. D’Aloisio says. It’s not personalized; all users will see the same stories every day. It’s currently available at the App Store. It could end up being useful; we’ll just get through the entire Times front page, all our fave blogs, a few clips of The Daily Show, the remainder of the Observer.com posts for the day and some Facebook posts, then check it out and let you know.