The tool I chose to review for this project is called “slices”. Slices is an online platform where one can create, manage, and publish multimedia content accessible to anyone on the web. Slices is a beautifully created software that allows you to create your own interactive stories and publish them in a blink of an eye. I found the software to be very similar to the concept of “stories” in many social media apps today. By using audio and visual components, “slices” allows you to be a creative storyteller through cinematic experience. Its utility in evoking emotion makes it a great tool for journalists to use all over the world.
I created a story centered around the greatest basketball players to ever grace the Earth. This is one of those never-ending conversations, where there is no solid answer. With enough evidence, you could argue that one player is better than another but often time it’s just whoever can sell their reasoning better. I formed a list of who I consider the 8 greatest and most influential basketball players to ever play the game. This list started with Bill Russel, then Wilt Chamberlain, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, and finally Stephen Curry. Since my interactive story was about “greatness” I thought a beautiful-looking minimalist style would work well with my creative process. Each slice or part of the over-arching story was about one of the players. I found the best pictures of each player and animated the background to give a slow zoom to captivate the readers. The utility of audio is what made this software really stand out in my opinion. We could use any audio clip or soundtrack to add much more depth to our storytelling, making it feel all the more professional.
When starting out with the tool, I played around with it for a few hours before settling in on my story. The interface was very user-friendly, so it wasn’t hard to learn how to edit my slices and incorporate different visual and auditory effects. Some trouble I had at first was matching up my audio clip with the background animation to make sure it looked as smooth as possible. To fix this, I realized I could just adjust the time the picture of the player zoomed in. Moreover, I didn’t know what theme to make for the audio clips at first, but I knew I wanted to inspire a feeling of awe in the readers. I wanted the story watchers to feel as if these players were out of this world relative to their other basketball peers. Once I started playing with different clips, I decided to use each player’s unique qualities that made them as great as they were, showcased by their own words or the words of other players (this makes it seem even more impressive). For the final slice, I tried to put it all together by finishing up with a poll titled “who is the greatest of them all?”, where the reader can decide who they believe is the cream of the crop per se.
Ultimately, I believe this tool is fantastic for journalistic settings. It can create a visually stunning short story in a matter of minutes and is also catered to our fast-paced, attention-pulling world. The aesthetic component to me is what sells the tool the most, as there are a decent number of editable things that they made super simple for the user, where trial and error is enough to get a good grasp on all of its capabilities.
Story link: https://player.slices.co/stories/-NEJcGXh3vbIS32MtO1f