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Storm news roundup 04-11-11

Our favourite web(ish) stories from the week…


“Groupon has floated on the US stock market at a ridiculous valuation of $13bn. For a company that has never made a cent of profit that is quite amazing. Personally, my love affair with the service has ended. At the beginning of the year I was regularly buying deals from the site, however, in recent months the service has struggled to offer any genuinely local deals as business owners have realised they were being taken for a ride. It’ll be interesting to see how quickly and hard their share price tanks!”


“As a Kindle owning Amazon Prime customer I was rather interested to learn that Amazon is planning a kind of lending library system for Kindle owning Prime customers, whereby you can borrow one book at a time from a selection of around 5,000 ebooks, changing it once a month. Unsurprisingly the big six publishers are not so keen and have decided not to join in, claiming that the scheme will damage sales. I’m not convinced that giving people one book a month will seriously damage demand for ebooks, I currently have three different books on the go on my Kindle and I doubt I’m alone. If anything it would probably encourage me to try books by authors that I’d not consider otherwise. Much like a real library then.”


“My news for this week is this really rather awesome short online magazine celebrating 75 years of high definition broadcasting on the BBC. Did you know it was deemed High Definition back then because it was greater than 250 lines?!”


“A fascinating article on a dyslexic designers attempt to create a font specifically tailored to be easily read by sufferers of dyslexia. Having spent years struggling with his own dyslexia, 30 year old Christian Boer dedicated his time at graduate school creating the font, which has recently been made available to schools and organisations. Through a variety of tweaking, such as altering letter thicknesses at the bases of letters to make them appear weighted, Boer was able to stop dyslexic brains flipping letters such as “p” and “d” upside down, as can often occur when a dyslexic person is reading. It’s great to see designers impacting the field of science in ways such as this, and really goes to show how powerful a medium design can be.”


“BREAKING NEWS: The twittersphere is in outrage as the @shippamspaste twitter feed has been axed by Twitter. The unofficial, satirical feed disappeared earlier today admit rumours that Twitter caved to pressure from Princes Shippams brand”


“I’m a big fan of technology but rather more a fan of how we can use technology to get content across in interesting ways – and I’m particularly interested in the telling of stories. One of the first sites I totally obsessed about was the original [fray] – beautifully designed, intensely personal stories which still stand up more than a decade later. My current obsession is Letters Of Note – another wonderful content-rich loveliness. So when Twitter Stories launched this week my ears pricked up. Obviously, this is first and foremost a marketing piece (and there’s a tendency to cheesy HERO stories), but I also really like the simplicity of the idea and the way it is presented.”