Technology • Innovation • Publishing — Issue #115

Kathy Sandler
6 min readOct 19, 2020


NVIDIA AI for Video

RT @Pogue If this works, it’s just nuts. Nvidia has come up with a video compression algorithm that lets you do Zoom calls with a tiny fraction of the bandwidth usually required. Could be a game-changer for people with poor internet connections. (Via @chrismessina!)

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Microsoft, Verizon-backed startup rolls out ad tech to 2,500 Walgreens

Cooler Screens, a tech startup that replaces refrigerator doors with digital advertising displays, has raised about $80 million.

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AI Ruined Chess. Now, It’s Making the Game Beautiful

Former world champion Vladimir Kramnik teaming up w/ Alphabet’s AI lab DeepMind, makers of AlphaZero, to test variants on chess that can jolt players into creative patterns and restore some of the human art to chess. #AI


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Covid: Test error ‘should never have happened’

The problem is that the Public Health England developers picked an old file format to do this — known as XLS. As a consequence, each template could handle only about 65K rows of data rather than the 1M-plus rows that Excel is actually capable of. The error meant that although those who tested positive were told about their results, their close contacts were not traced.

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Instagram adding shopping to video IGTV and

#ecommerce #Instagram

Publishing & Media

Latinx-Owned Bookstores

From @LatinxinPub: Latinx owned bookstores located in the United States and Puerto Rico to support during #NationalHispanicHeritageMonth and beyond.

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Silicon Valley Drama From Pete Nowalk & Joanna Coles Gets ABC Production
ABC has given a production commitment to Valley Of the Gods, a drama from How To Get Away With Murder creator/executive producer Pete Nowalk, The Bold Type executive producer Joanna Coles and ABC Studios.

How podcasting became a new front in the streaming wars

RT @DCNorg The likes of Spotify see a chance to differentiate in a world where all music services offer access to roughly the same product.

Conan O’Brien’s Team Coco Inks Multi-Project Deal With Audible

The pact encompasses scripted and unscripted projects and will also include non-fiction documentaries. #podcasting #Audible

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Fox News Is Launching a Book
Fox News has created Fox News Books and signed a three-book deal with HarperCollins, whose Broadside Books will oversee the imprint.


Bonnier Corp to Sell Its Biggest U.S. Magazines to Venture Equity

HT @mediagazer European magazine publisher Bonnier has reached a deal to hand over U.S. titles Saveur, Popular Science, Field & Stream and others to North Equity LLC as it moves to exit US media market.

Quartz Is Put on the Block Just Two Years After Sale
Japan’s Uzabase expects to sell the business news site for far less than the $86 million it paid, reflecting in part the impact of the pandemic.

‘GQ’ Teams With NBA Star On First Guest-Curated Product Box



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Ikea opens first-ever used furniture
The store will help the company meet its goal of going completely circular by 2030.

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Google plans to turn YouTube into a major e-commerce
The goal is to convert YouTube’s bounty of videos into a vast catalog of items that viewers can peruse, click on and buy directly.

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U.S. Labor Department Investigating Microsoft Over Its Commitment To Increase Black Representation In Workforce, alleging reverse discrimination because they are a federal

The U.S. Department of Labor last week initiated a probe against Microsoft over its June announcement to increase representation of Black people in its workforce, according to a Tuesday blog post from the tech giant, a continuation of the Trump administration’s adversity to diversity efforts and racial and ethnic education. As a federal contractor, Microsoft is subject to certain requirements from the department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), which is investigating the company over unlawful discrimination on the basis of race under the Civil Rights Act.


Apple Removes Nearly 30,000 Apps From China App

Apple removed nearly 30,000 apps from its Chinese App Store due to the apps lacking an official license from local regulators.

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New Consumer Alert on Yelp Takes Firm Stance Against

RT @Yelp Now, when a business gains attention for reports of racist conduct, Yelp will place a new Business Accused of Racist Behavior Alert on their Yelp page to inform users, along with a link to a news article where they can learn more.

Resources & Opportunities

Letter in support of the trans & non-binary community from US/Canada publishing professionals

MT @maureenjohnson A letter was circulated around North American publishing circles to support trans and non-binary folx. It is a companion to one released in the UK. Authors, publishers, editors, agents, and other publishing professionals have signed. Letters do not fix things. They are designed to a) show support and b) bring awareness to an issue. In this case, the issue is transphobia in the publishing discourse and community. DM @maureenjohnson to add your name.

Free School Library Journal Summit 2020

RT @sljournal Join Cicely Lewis @cicelythegreat at the #SLJSummit. The 2020 School Librarian of the Year and founder of Read Woke will discuss her program Woke Wednesdays and teaching students about voting Oct. 24

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Free Virtual Reading Stamina & Endurance

READMarathon is a friendly 26.2 day reading challenge that, begins on October 6th and runs through November 1st, focusing on reading stamina.

Lot page

Calling All Thriller Lovers and Aspiring Writers! Bid to Have a Character Named After You in the Next Novel by Kate White Plus Meet w/ Kate via

Bid to have a character named after you in the next novel by Kate White, New York Times bestselling suspense author, plus meet with Kate via Zoom. To support Women’s Media Group scholarships to help diverse women enter media & publishing. @WMG_NYC



Kathy Sandler

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