NE News iPad and iPhone Apps
A famous Italian movie director was once quoted as saying - "a different language is a different vision of life" 1. When it comes to information, there is little doubt that current smart-phones and tablets, all equipped with crystal clear screens and high speed connectivity, speak to consumers in a different language than that of traditional channels of information.
In August 2013, the IAEA Nuclear Information Section accepted the challenge to establish a new vision for content distribution, releasing a brand new application called NE News, targeted to mobile devices based on the popular Apple iOS platform, such as the iPad and the iPhone. Functioning as a one-stop access, single portal to all newsletters and brochures of the Department of Nuclear Energy, NE News is an innovative product, both in technique and inspiration.
Since the dawn of the Internet, we have witnessed a Copernican revolution in the relationship between information and its users: while in the past users had to find their way to information, it is now information having to find its way to its recipients, often by disrupting the veil of noise created by an overabundance of similar knowledge.
Consolidating all available newsletters in a single, intuitive and easy to use application, NE News works as a news aggregator for the Department of Nuclear Energy, guaranteeing immediate and cohesive visibility to its newsletters, normally disseminated throughout departmental sub-portals. Readers can still, at their discretion, look autonomously for freshly released newsletters on the relevant websites of the Department; alternatively, they can simply let the newsletters find them, running NE News on their favourite Apple phone or tablet – a passive approach to information endorsed, according to recent studies2, by 66% of tablet or smart phone users.
While newsletters play a significant role in departmental information, emerging social media channels play another role. The presence of the Department of Nuclear Energy on the Twitter social network is long established, with Sections connecting directly with their stakeholders, providing news and receiving feedback on their related activities. The NE News application aggregates all relevant Department of Nuclear Energy Twitter accounts, providing intuitive, immediate access to the social network, thus promoting user interaction.
NE News also includes a privileged gateway to the collection of the International Nuclear Information System (INIS), a digital library of over 3.6 million publications on the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, right at the user’s fingertips. Developed for the Apache Cordova platform, NE News incorporates the intuitive jQuery Mobile UI framework, which guarantees maximum compatibility and portability of the source code.
NE News is currently available, at no cost to the user, in the Apple App Store, for iPad and iPhone/iPod Touch devices running on iOS 5 or above. An Android version is currently under development and expected for release in the Google Play Store by the end of 2013.
Systems Development and Support Group
“Un linguaggio diverso è una diversa visione della vita” (Federico Fellini)
Pew Research Center, 2012 – cf. http://www.journalism.org/2012/10/01/future-mobile-news/