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Twitter Founders Want to Reinvent Digital Publishing – Again (Mashable)
Twitter founders Ev Williams and Biz Stone want to shake up the digital publishing world with their latest venture, Medium. The pair, who also worked together on Blogger, announced the new platform Tuesday. GigaOM The new collaborative publishing tool lets people contribute as much or as little as they want to themed “collections” of content. The idea, the founders said in a blog post, is that people should be able to publish without “the burden of becoming a blogger” and worrying about developing an audience. The Next Web The platform has a grid-based layout and appears to fall somewhere between Twitter and Blogger as an option for content creators. The interface for photographs is especially gorgeous, taking up the full window with the image and relegating chrome to the corners of the screen. TechCrunch Anyone can read and give feedback on Medium entries now, with publishing access to roll out from friends and family to more people soon. To start, there are four collections. VentureBeat
The big question is, does the Internet have room for one more publishing platform? And if it does, is Medium the lucky one out of a sea of competing products? Read more

Breaking: Twitter CEO Ev Williams Steps Down

Twitter CEO Ev Williams is stepping down to take a role in product strategy, with COO Dick Costolo assuming CEO duties. The company made the announcement in a blog post. It likely would have made it via Twitter, but the service was down at the time.

Writes Williams:

When I insisted on bringing Dick into the COO role a year ago, I got a lot of questions from my board. But I knew Dick would be a strong complement to me, and this has proven to be the case. During his year at Twitter, he has been a critical leader in devising and executing our revenue efforts, while simultaneously and effectively making the trains run on time in the office. Dick can be even more effective at this now because Ali Rowghani, Adam Bain, Mike Abbott, Katie Stanton and Kevin Thau joined our leadership team this year and are having a big impact. Given Dick’s track record as a three-time successful CEO, I’m confident we can make this a smooth transition.

Williams is now the second Twitter CEO to step aside after being unable to find a strong profit center. Jack Dorsey left the position in late 2008.

Twitter as a Personal Assistant?

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Could Twitter soon act as your personal assistant? GigaOm blogger Mathew Ingram writes that now that the company has acquired Values of n, the latter is shutting down two of its main services: Stikkit, a smart sticky-note app, and I Want Sandy, a personal assistant app.

Twitter founder and CEO Ev Williams said in a blog post that “[T]he technology behind the scenes will live on and potentially re-emerge as part of Twitter’s systems, services, user experience, or open source libraries.” Meanwhile, Values of n founder Rael Dornfest wrote, “[Twitter] has no immediate plans to incorporate Sandy or Stikkit’s feature sets into its core product [but] those who know our apps well may notice familiar-feeling bits and bobs appearing in your Twitter experience.”

Ingram said in the article that, potentially, the two services could eventually (once integrated into Twitter) let Twitter users collect bits of personal data about their friends, such as birthdays, meetings with location data, and other reminders. Then they could set text messages to act as little alarms on their cell phones. It would be just like having a personal assistant, only much more annoying.