App Check:
Zite [non-legal] [news]


 (Photo credit: AJC1)

A few times each month I highlight web or mobile apps that are useful to lawyers. Sometimes the apps are developed specifically for lawyers and other times they are non-legal apps but are nevertheless useful for lawyers.

Today’s app is Zite, one of my favorites. It’s a personalized news magazine with a very user-friendly and interactive interface. Zite is a free app and is available for the iPhone, iPad, and is also now newly available for Android phones.

Zite does a great job at locating content that you’ll find interesting. It seeks out relevant content based on your preferences in two ways. First, it synchs with your Google Reader feed. Then, it prompts you to choose pre-set topics that interest you and allows you to create custom topics as well.

Once you’ve done so, Zite serves up stories based on your interests and then learns even more about your preferences as you interact with the app. You indicate via a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” whether you like a particular story. You can also indicate whether you would like to learn more about a particular topic, thus giving the app even more information about the content that is most relevant to you.

Zite also connects with your social media accounts, making it easy for you to share articles across your networks. You simply click the “share” button, choose the social network you’d like to use, and then Zite automatically creates a summary, which includes the title of the article or blog post, the source and a shortened link to the website. Next, you add your own commentary and then click “send,” at which point the summary will appear in your timeline on your chosen social network.

This is one of my favorite apps and I use it daily. Apparently I’m not the only one, since Apple selected it as the #1 news app for 2011.

You can download the iPhone and iPad apps here and the Android app here.

-Niki Black

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