For the most part, Google Maps was exceptionally helpful in navigating around Ireland. I say mostly because there were a few times when it put you seemingly in the middle of nowhere or “behind” the street you were actually looking for. But overall it was very helpful by car and on foot. Having some experience with Google Maps’ “walking directions” was helpful because as most will agree, it is nearly unusable when you actually activate the directions. However, the key was to plot the walking directions you wanted and then simply navigate using the GPS’ ability to locate you on the map, so really it’s using the GPS and Google Maps as a very high tech compass. This was also a lifesaver during occasional times when my phone lost data connectivity as this method still worked perfectly, provided you “plotted” your walking route before losing connectivity.
I mention all of this as a little tech-related anecdote, but also because it’s possible that Google Maps walking directions will be wildly improved thanks to Augmented Reality. Check out this tweet to see where we might be headed.
A report from analytics company parse.ly looks at a recent Facebook algorithm update and breaks down the percentage of traffic loss by publishers within the Facebook news feed by content categories e.g. politics, business, news, and so forth. In short, everyone lost, with some categories taking much bigger hits than others. The Arts & Entertainment category lead (lost?) the pack with a whopping 71% loss. This is yet more evidence that content publishers should in no way trust or rely upon organic search and social networks for consistent eyeballs. This is all helping to accelerate the trend of publishers looking to subscription models to create reliable revenue. The reality is that this is going to be a messy and difficult problem for publishers for many years to come.
This post originally appeared in what had originally been called The Eric Berlin E-mail Newsletter. To get a weekly blast of pop culture, digital media, and politics that helps make sense of an increasingly frazzled world, sign on up for The Berlin Files here.