The idea is simple - take RSS and social feeds and turn them in to a branded, slick user interface. Pressjack is an attempt to make it easy and intuitive to publish on the Web with existing tools and, for once, not let the Silicon Valley startups eat their lunch.
According to The Next Web, Pressjack is aimed squarely at publishers. We downloaded a free trial of the app and it looks like it is a simple tool that brings in RSS feeds and repackages them. It is still in early beta and the trial application is a little buggy but it looks like the ability to turn a feed into a branded, browser-based magazine is a straightforward process.
The outcome, in theory, should be a Flipboard-like experience. This is both forward thinking and backward thinking. Pressjack was created by Trinity Innovations, a company founded by former publishers in 2004.
"As ex-publishers, we understanding that publishers already had the skills in-house, all they needed was a software solution that automated the conversion of content into a digital magazine format," the company says on its site."
The publishing industry, with a few exceptions like the New York Times, has been miles behind in the thought race to create new and interesting ways to consume content on the Web. Yet, Pressjack is not exactly unique nor is it the only way to create browser-based magazines. InMag has offered the same type of functionality for a while and Good Noows makes an decent-looking browser aggregation interface.
The hope for something like Pressjack is that it does not become a static interface in the browser. People are still having nightmares of the late 1990s and early 2000s when a lot of publishers tried to put their content on the Web via a PDF magazine that was essentially a scanned version of the print product. Tools like RSS and Twitter feeds change how content can be curated and presented.
Trinity Innovations' vision is an interesting one. Instead of a going to a news site and navigating through the classic browser interface, the Web could be comprised of more attractive online magazines that are sleeker, more intuitive and easier to sell ads against.
Where does Pressjack aim to take content? Into the future or back 10 years?