What do People Magazine, Foreign Policy, and Forbes have in common?
They love their lists.
These diverse publications share one staple feature: the annual list that recognizes individuals on behalf of their contributions to society. The rankings range from superficial (People Magazine‘s well known “Most Beautiful People” list), to intellectual (Foreign Policy‘s “Top 100 Global Thinkers“), to financial (Forbes’ “The World’s Most Powerful People”). These lists gather together a motley group of people whose achievements are highly regarded, either on a grand scale or within a smaller community.
But these “beautiful people,” “global thinkers,” and “powerful people” aren’t the only ones who deserve to be lauded for their successes. The Root 100 list, published by TheRoot.com, is an equally compelling compilation of influential individuals.
The Root 100 is an annual list that honors “black achievers and influencers” between the ages of 25 and 45 for “excelling in their fields and using their influence to shape the world and make it a better place.” Since 2009, The Root 100 has given well-deserved acknowledgement to African-American leaders in a diversity of fields, including business, media, sports, politics, technology, and the arts. The 2012 list, released this past Thursday, includes a wide scope of individuals ranging from New York Times technology reporter Jenna Wortham to hip-hop mogul Shawn ‘Jay-Z’ Carter.
Though the strict focus on highlighting African-American leaders is more than enough to give The Root 100 a novel edge that no other annual list possesses, this year’s list is especially unique as each honoree now has their own digital app.
As part of recognizing The Root 100 2012, the WaPo Labs team developed a way for fans to stay up to date on their favorite honoree: each app aggregates Twitter and Facebook results, news articles, photos, and videos from YouTube so that fans can stay in the loop on the latest news about all of their favorite honorees.
Each individual app can be filtered to show certain types of content, favorite articles, and social media activity. News articles are pulled in from another Labs product, Trove, a personalized news technology platform that aggregates from over 15,000 content sources. The 100 apps are a fun, innovative tool for keeping up with all the news on a specific person from The Root 100 2012 in a way that was not available until now.
All of the apps are available on Android and can accessed by individual honoree here: http://www.theroot.com/root-100/2012/android-apps.
If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by how many amazing individuals there are on The Root 100 2012 (100 is a big number!), here are a few of my favorites to get you started. Happy downloading!
For more information about WaPo Labs projects and products, be sure to visit our team’s homepage at http://www.wapolabs.com/projects/.