“The Web is good at creating short and snappy bits of information, but not so much when it comes to long-form, edited, fact-and-spell-checked work,” said Nicholas Thompson, former senior editor at Wired (and current senior editor of The New Yorker).
So true. This sentiment prompted Thompson and Wired freelancer Evan Ratliff to collaborate with programmer and Web designer Jefferson Rabb to come up with The Atavist, an app which offers both clean text and multimedia for long-form journalism on the web.
Readers who buy an article from The Atavist for the iPad, according to David Carr at the New York Times, can begin reading a piece at home, then switch to an audio version on their drive to work. Useful! Since its debut, The Atavist has published three long pieces and has had over 40,000 downloads of its app. At the moment, an article costs $2.99 for the iPad and $1.99 for the Kindle or Nook. The Atavist is also looking to scale their approach to nonfiction books.
Moreover, instead of being developed far away in some anonymous garage in Silicon Valley, Carr points out that The Atavist was conceived “in bars up and down Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.” Now if that won’t sell you on it, nothing will.