Adobe acquires Magento

I’m deep in both Adobe and Magento worlds, but don’t see how this helps me much in either capacity.

Adobe plans to create a new system to support online entrepreneurship, the company said in a statement.

Adobe Creative products can help Magento look better, but Flash can only make it more insecure, and Adobe’s onerous DRM can only make Magento harder to use for customers.


finally resurrected Spyder IDE for Python

It took me ages but I have finally managed to resurrect my friendly Spyder IDE in Python for Mac.  I know there are lots of alternatives but this is the relatively simple one that I am familiar with and it was a great feeling to actually be able to  step through breakpoints again. Viva algorithmic publishing!

The Old Testament as the divinely inspired Firefly

I’ve been listening to the Old Testament as I drive to work these days and am working through Isaiah right now.  The titular character, like many other key OT figures, is a prophet commenting on the life and times of his nation and culture.  Thinking like a publisher, it occurred to me that if you think of the 66 books of the Bible as nonfiction backlist, they are the divinely inspired version of “Firefly,”  i.e. a high-quality and popular series that produced way too few episodes.

At an average of roughly 1-4 books per generation, the ~70 generations between 70 AD and today could support as many as 280 additional books of the Bible, each telling the history of a nation or set of nations over a generation or  two.  The implied author would be a prophetic persona, the style Biblical, probably more like NIV than KJV.  Many challenges and opportunities in this approach.  For  example, how about a New Apocryphica covering the years 1776 to 1815?  A clever author could use this as a platform to comment about the history of the entire world, Napoleon, China, Jefferson, Sally Hemings, and all.

article about Nimble Books in Italian

I missed this when it first came out in 2015.  A good article — understands what I was trying to achieve with PageKicker (and am once again!).  Italian (Google Translate is available).

L’algoritmo nel libro

Orientato invece al “market research” è l’algoritmo di cui si avvale W.Frederick Zimmerman – tecnologo, avvocato ed ora anche editore – ideatore della piattaforma Nimble Books. Su questa piattaforma i sistemi AI lavorano soprattutto in funzione pre-pubblicazione, rastrellando in rete tutte le informazioni rilevanti per il progetto editoriale: l’originalità rispetto alle tendenze di mercato, l’adesione o meno dell’argomento con i contemporanei gusti del pubblico ecc. Insomma, per l’algoritmo di Zimmerman la priorità è comprendere – il più rapidamente possibile– quale potrebbe essere il “miglior libro potenziale del momento” da pubblicare prima che qualcun altro se ne accorga. È evidente, che il “core” di Nimble Books non è la scrittura automatica di un testo, ma la fase che la precede, ovvero quel processo in grado di fornire – dopo messo insieme tutti i pezzi giusti –  all’editore la soluzione di un difficilissimo puzzle:  veder finalmente apparire la sagoma di un best seller.

Aspetto interessante è che la soluzione scelta da Nimble Books propone un modello dove l’algoritmo non vuole sostituire tout court il fattore umano, ma opera a fianco ad esso integrandolo ed incrementandolo

Instead oriented to “market research” is the algorithm used by W.Frederick Zimmerman – technologist, lawyer and now also editor – creator of the Nimble Books platform. On this platform AI systems mainly work in pre-publication function, raking all the information relevant to the publishing project online: the originality with respect to market trends, the adhesion or not of the subject with the contemporary tastes of the public etc. . In short, for Zimmerman’s algorithm the priority is to understand – as quickly as possible – what could be the “best potential book of the moment” to be published before someone else realizes it. It is evident that the “core” of Nimble Books is not the automatic writing of a text, but the phase that precedes it, or that process that can provide – after put together all the right pieces – the editor the solution of a difficult puzzle: finally see the shape of a best seller.

Interestingly, the solution chosen by Nimble Books proposes a model where the algorithm does not want to replace the human factor tout court, but works alongside it, integrating it and increasing it.