USC Launches Media Lab

The University of Southern California is looking to tie together technology and media, saying Thursday that it has launched a new Annenberg Innovation Lab as part of the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism. According to USC, the new lab--backed by IBM, Verizon, the Levi's brand and Mattel--will focus on the areas of geolocation, social networking, digital entertainment, gaming behavior and transmedia.

The cross-disciplinary lab will include students and professors from both Annenberg, as well as the Marshall School of Business, Viterbi School of Engineering and School of Cinematic Arts. According to Roberto Suro, managing director of the lab, the lab is intended to be all about developing "new kinds of digital tools for creating and disseminating information."

Specific projects listed by USC are developing technology and tools for journalists and communications scholars; creating interactive television applications and widgets; tapping into social networking; advancing e-books; developing 3D storytelling tools; and working on portable digital device technology, as it relates to the production, distribution and monetization of news and entertainment content.