Twitter makes it easier to switch between top and latest tweets

Twitter updates the way the timeline now works for iOS users. (Supplied)
Updated 18 December 2018
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Twitter makes it easier to switch between top and latest tweets

JEDDAH: Twitter announced Tuesday that it’s now giving users the ability to switch between tweets chosen by the app’s algorithm and the latest tweets from profiles users follow.
The update, which will be available this week, is only for iOS users and will allow for better conversations, the company says.
“Twitter sees people having more conversations and coming back to Twitter more often likely because they are finding Twitter more useful, informative, and fun. These are people who have turned off ‘Show the best Tweets first” previously’,” a statement said. The company released the algrothim driven trimeline in 2014 but provided a mechanism to disable it. With the changes the company will in the next few months remove the feature completely.
The move, to give the user a better choice of what tweets they see, will likely provide a better balance of relevant and timely content in users’ feeds.
 
 


Open that door? Netflix explores choose-your-own horror, romance

Updated 24 min 55 sec ago
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Open that door? Netflix explores choose-your-own horror, romance

  • The world’s largest streaming service wants to try out more interactive entertainment following the response to science-fiction movie Black Mirror: Bandersnatch
  • In Bandersnatch, the first decision viewers could make was whether a character would eat Sugar Puffs or Frosties for breakfast

LOS ANGELES: A Netflix experiment that began with viewers picking a movie character’s breakfast cereal may expand to letting the audience choose the best on-screen date or the safest path to escape an ax murderer.
The world’s largest streaming service wants to try out more interactive entertainment following the response to science-fiction movie “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch,” executives told reporters this week.
The company is looking for possibilities across genres such as comedy, horror and romance, said Todd Yellin, Netflix’s vice president of product.
“Why can’t you have a romantic title where you get to choose who she goes out with?” Yellin said. “Or horror titles. Should you walk through that door, or should you dive out that window and get the heck out of there? You can make the choice.”
In “Bandersnatch,” the first decision viewers could make was whether a character would eat Sugar Puffs or Frosties for breakfast.
The idea was to give audiences a simple choice to encourage them to test the technology, which involved clicking via a remote or tapping on the screen to select an option. The movie kept playing even if the viewer did not choose.
The cereal scene became an Internet sensation when “Bandersnatch” was released last December.
“Like many of you, I got addicted to ‘Bandersnatch’ and trying to figure out what’s the significance of the cereal, and not the cereal, all the different options,” Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings said.
The film provided feedback about how long people want to engage with interactive programming and how many choices they want to make, Hastings said. After the cereal decision, viewers selected things such as the type of music a character would play or whether they would jump off a building.
When viewers can direct a story, they feel “really with the character,” Yellin said. “You are more viscerally feeling what they are feeling. You just made the choice for them.”
That is why Yellin wants to try the format in other stories where characters face immense consequences. “Horror is life and death situations constantly,” he said. And in romances, “the emotional stakes are high.”
Yellin said the effort is in its early stages, and Hastings suggested he does not see interactive entertainment replacing traditional storytelling.
“I don’t know if I would do it every day,” Hastings said, “but as part of my viewing, it’s pretty exciting.”
Netflix already has produced a handful of interactive shows for kids, who were immediately receptive to the idea, Yellin said.
“Kids don’t have established rules,” he said. “They assume that’s the way the world should be and they’ll try it.”