Ananova is a Web-oriented news service that features a computer-simulated animation of a woman newscaster, named "Ananova," who has been programmed to "read" newscasts to Web users. Described as "the world's first virtual newscaster," Ananova, the animation, is really a novel user interface to a Web service that allows users to receive customized news. Ananova can be requested to:
- Read a two-minute newscast summary
- Read a customized newscast based on selected preferences
- Give you selected sports scores and weather information as it develops
- Alert you by e-mail when a story you're interested in becomes available
- Periodically scan a targeted group of Web sites and notify you of new changes
Ananova combines live Web newscasting from an animated "talking head" with intelligent agent service. The animation is described by her designers as 28 years old, 5 feet 8 inches tall, and with a "pleasant, quietly intelligent manner."