People consume stories. Narrative is the form of knowledge that people are most interested in – from fiction and non-fiction entertainment to social media to serious news. Narrative technologies will enable deep innovation in digital media by providing new tools for capturing, managing and delivering stories – an alternative to existing article-based digital media. Narrative-based digital media opens the possibility of new approaches to content creation, digital journalism, content discovery, news consumption, and information personalization, including approaches designed to deliver cognitive understanding rather than to merely drive addictive media behavior.
Many applications of computational narrative result from the separation of the structuring of a story from the representation of that story – two very different functions that are now tightly combined within isolated text articles. This new separation unbundles journalism from writing and enables either writers or generative narrative technologies to vary the presentation of the same narrative by style, by level of detail, by editorial preference, by level of assumed background, by reading context, etc., enabling new levels of personalization in digital media consumption. Structured narratives also enable entirely new ways of consuming news and information that would otherwise be impossible, such as smart delivery of narrative across sessions, visualization of narratives, deduplication and/or consolidation of content based on narrative elements, consistency of preferred discourse style across media sources, analysis of the factual consistency of non-fiction and news stories against a ‘historical record’, assessment of narrative novelty at the level of the individual, etc.
Applications of computational narrative platforms also exist beyond digital media – in marketing, in entertainment, in education, in organizational communication, in medicine and in many other fields. A structured narrative platform is an enabling technology upon which innovation in any form of human communication can be based.
Several demonstration applications based on StructuredStories narrative technology platform will be available by mid 2014.