Victus Spiritus


New Journalism, Part Curation Part Content Creation

28 Mar 2010

Image courtesy of Aakin Patel (enjoy his other work)

Tech media and fellow startup junky Robert Scoble recently clarified the type of tool(s) he needs to make the job of curating real time web information easier, faster, and more productive. Part of what he needs overlaps heavily with what we're designing towards with's social reader, but some of what Rob's looking for is totally new. One of the most intriguing concepts he discussed is the bundle or molecule (he and Dave Winer have discussed the idea before).

Here's a use case: While a curator is checking out a stream of feed updates, they spot something novel and it ripples in the information stream they're observing. The curator can then drag and drop the updates and recreate them into a new bundle which they can annotate and repost (refeeds). What we need to accomplish this is a reorganization of the real time stream of updates. Blogs can achieve this task now, but it can take a fair amount of work on the part of the author.

What I believe is the best solution are social readers that enable drag and drop functionality, and content creation systems which can speak the same language. An open standard for content transformation would allow any capable reader, and any capable blogging platform to fulfill the need Robert is asking for help with. Both social reader and content creation will enable tagging, and give the curator a permalink at bundle initialization. This way bundles have raw tags and curated tags, perhaps with different meanings. After the curator/creator is satisfied with the bundle they can publish it by dragging it onto another capable launching area, or by simply hitting a post now button. The raw feed data will be visible in the bundle, in the same format that it appears natively on the web (audio, video, images, visual or text).

More to come as we focus in on what aspects of this we can best achieve with the resources we have at Victus Media. If anyone else is targeting specific aspects of this, in an open source form please get in touch with myself (messel at victusmedia dot com) or ping Tyler ( I'm particularly interested in the protocols for easy drag and drop exchange of feed updates between browsers.