Technology • Innovation • Publishing — Issue #108

Kathy Sandler
9 min readAug 17, 2020



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E Ink demos a folding e-reader that can also take
The E Ink corporation has developed a foldable e-reader prototype with integrate Wacom stylus for note taking. The technology is not quite ready for the mainstream, but it shows a future of digital notebooks with foldable e ink screens.

Amazon launches Braket quantum computing service in general availability Amazon launches Braket quantum computing service, competing w Microsoft’s Azure Quantum. #Quantumcomputing has the potential to solve problems beyond classical computers by harnessing quantum mechanics to build powerful information-processing tools.

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Google’s Lookout can now detect paper currency and read document text Google’s Lookout accessibility app is now available globally, and it comes with improvements, including U.S. paper currency detection.

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Google rolls out earthquake detection and new in-car features for Google announced updates heading to Android, including new Android for cars features and a Bedtime mode that reminds users when it’s time to sleep.


Researchers bring Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel into An international team of researchers on how the next generation of spreadsheets will work in virtual reality. #VR

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Software Can Recreate 3D Spaces From Random Internet A new machine learning approach from Google researchers can turn people’s tourist photos on the internet into incredibly detailed 3D scenes. #ML

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Experts Predict More Digital Innovation by 2030 Aimed at Enhancing HT @Personanondata A majority of experts canvassed say significant reforms aimed at correcting problems in democratic institutions will take place. But they are divided about whether this will lead to positive outcomes for the public. #technology



Amazon’s Machine Learning University is making its online courses available to the The Machine Learning University classes cover natural language processing, computer vision, and tabular data.

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Google’s AI thinks women wearing masks have mouths covered with duct


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Instagram Reels sees early brand interest with Dunkin, Red Bull, Maybelline, Louis Vuitton, and Sephora
Facebook’s TikTok clone already has some early users … not teens, but some major marketers.

Publishing & Media


Publishers Are Investing in a Second Generation of Audio New York Times reporters get voice-over training; BBC invests in automated readers designed to sound like humans. Media companies used to rely on voice artists or basic text-to-audio software to turn written articles into audio stories. Now they are developing humanlike reader technology and training reporters in the art of reading out loud to help people with overflowing “to-read” lists.

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Authors Can Register Copyright in Multiple Short Online Works Together Starting August HT @AuthorsGuild Authors will be able to register the text of up to 50 “short online works” (such as blog posts or articles under 17,500 words) with the U.S. Copyright Office using a single registration application and with a single filing fee of $65.

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Iconic Lower East Side bookstore Bluestockings has found a new home! Beloved NYC bookstore @bluestockings — long a fixture on the Lower East Side — has found a new home.

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New York Comic Con Is Going
The show is partnering with YouTube for the con, which is usually at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

Tribune Licenses WaPo’s Ad Tech Jeff Bezos-owned The Washington Post is selling its tech platforms to other newspapers.Tribune Publishing will license their revenue platform Zeus Technology for ad performance/delivery, + has been using their Arc Publishing CMS. #technology #newsbusiness

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Tribune Publishing is closing some physical newsrooms, including the Capital RT @Poynter Newsrooms in Orlando and New York will also close their physical locations


Women’s Prize launches free Reclaim Her Name ebook series to honor female writers originally published under male There is some controversy here — some wonder if the women published under male pseudonyms did it for other reasons and point out that they chose those names. However, history is full of women using male pseudonyms to conceal their real identities and not fall victim to gender biases. These female authors are getting credit and the new covers are designed by female artists.

Karlie Kloss Leads Buyout of W Magazine, With Jason Blum Among New Owners In March, Future Media Group, furloughed the majority of W’s staff and suspended its publication, due to coronavirus. Just 9 months before, they had bought it from Condé Nast in a deal estimated at $7M. Bustle Digital Group will support technology, sales and operations.


Consumer magazine publishers opt out of reporting ABC Lack of travel and footfall to high streets during lockdown blamed for lower sales. #advertising

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Lack of events revenue squeezes B2B media, forcing virtual volume — and HT @AndyKowl Advertising, subscriptions and commerce have begun to recover. But events have not, and B2B media companies are feeling the squeeze.

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Self-published zines are back as artists respond to our reality in I love it: quaranzines! “The pandemic was the horrifying suspension of time that made things seem possible that weren’t in the past”

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Podcast Listening Starts Steady Comeback After Early Pandemic Podcasts also look to be a bright spot in a digital ad market hit hard by economic effects of the coronavirus. #podcasting

RT @pressfuturist Publishing Twitter, what’s your favourite thing that has been called ‘The Future of Publishing’? A fun thread.

Scribd acquires presentation-sharing service SlideShare from LinkedIn

Sustainable Publishing: Where We Need to Go MT @BISG How “green” is your book publishing business? Not green enough? Come to our SUSTAINABLE PUBLISHING talk on 8/18 1pm ET


Amazon can be liable for third-party sellers’ defective products, appeals court rules Amazon can be held liable for defective products sold on its Marketplace in California. The California Fourth District Court of Appeals reversed a 2019 trial court ruling and reinstated claims from a woman who says she suffered third-degree burns when a defective laptop battery she bought from a third-party seller on Amazon caught fire.

Amazon reportedly considering mall space for fulfillment centers Amazon reportedly has had talks with Simon Property Group about converting some of its mall spaces into fulfillment centers. The conversations started before the coronavirus pandemic, and before the latest wave of bankruptcy filings by mall stalwarts like Lord & Taylor, JCPenney, and Nieman Marcus. #retailapocalypse

Amazon rebrands Twitch Prime as Prime Gaming Amazon is rebranding Twitch Prime, which gives Amazon Prime subscribers perks on Twitch, by dropping the Twitch branding and emphasizing the Prime part of the name. The service will now be known as Prime Gaming. #gaming

Resources & Opportunities

Text USPS to 50409 + @Resistbot will write yr elected officials. Also buy stamps!

Rolling Stone: Senior Editor RT @freeblackgirl Rolling Stone is hiring a senior editor to focus on hip-hop. Black women music writers and editors, don’t self-reject. Apply, even if you don’t meet all the requirements. It’s your time to shine.

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Calling unagented Black creators of picture books, middle-grade, and graphic RT @SAABLES Going forward, my inbox will be open indefinitely to submissions from unagented Black creators of picture books, middle-grade, and graphic novels. Please take as much time as you need — this offer doesn’t expire. Black stories matter, Black books matter, Black lives matter. #BlackCreatorsinKidLit

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The SLF Diverse Writers and Diverse Worlds Grants RT @wordisdiversity Open for #submissions until Aug 31 “The SLF annually offers, since 2014, two diversity-centered #grants: Diverse #Writers and Diverse Worlds, both intended to foster the #creation of #speculative #fiction work rich in #diversity.”

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PEN Out Loud — PEN RT @PENamerica PEN America is thrilled to announce this year’s #PENOutLoud lineup with conversations between Yaa Gyasi & @rgay, @ayadakhtar & @brhodes, Claudia Rankine, Marilynne Robinson & @alexanderchee. Tickets on sale now.


Astoria Book RT @pilotviruet “ASTORIA BOOK FAIR! August 30th, 1–4pm, on the 31st avenue open streets. everything is free because books should be accessible to all :’)

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Summer of BookFest MT @center4bookarts The @WNYBookArts Summer of Book Fest is happening all season long, online.

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Latinx Kidlit Book RT @LatinxinPub Check out the truly incredible lineup for the @LasMusasBooks Latinx KidLit Book Festival this December! #LKBF2020 #LatinxReads #LatinxBookFestival

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DVpit — a biannual twitter pitching RT @DVpit_ #DVpit dates for your calendar!! October 26: Children’s / YA October 27: Adult / art on the hashtag #DVart this is a twitter pitch event exclusively for self-identifying marginalized authors & illustrators. for more info, please visit

TRANS & GNC TV SCRIBES MT @TanyaSaracho @StevenCanals is putting together a database of Transgender, GNC, Nonbinary & GenderQueer TV Writers. Spread the word! Industry professionals looking to hire can email: for a PDF of list!

Arthur A. Levine looking for picture book writers who are autistic to do #ownvoices RT @ArthurALevine1


Google Lens’ new ‘Homework’ filter will solve math problems from a Google has been giving students — and their parents — a few helpful tools to make studying from home a bit easier. Back in May, it launched an augmented reality feature within Search that lets you view 3D anatomy models and cellular structures. The company is using technology from mobile learning app Socratic, which it acquired last year, to power the upcoming Lens feature.



Kathy Sandler

Sr Mgr, Content Applications, Penguin Random House * Innovation * Technology * Publishing * Opinions expressed are my own