News Nerd Roundup, July 31, 2015

Newsroom code and projects that caught our eyes

Pluto made closer, from multimedia on the recent NASA flyby, in the New York Times.

With this post, our roundups are back—below, a few highlights from the big stack of wonderful things we’ve been reading in the last week or so.

How Much Water Does the West Really Have?

ProPublica, co-published with Matter, (July 17, 2015)
Part of Killing the Colorado series, an ongoing series of rich and disturbing environmental reporting, the article and animated video make a knotty topic into a clear, shareable explainer.

ProPublica also just released stats on its diversity, saying:

The reason for our commitment is not simply moral but also journalistic. ProPublica is dedicated to stories with moral force. Stories of injustice. Many of these injustices disproportionately affect people of color and other minority groups. To execute that journalism at the highest level, it’s crucial to have a newsroom filled with people from a broad range of backgrounds and perspectives.

A Renegade Trawler, Hunted for 10,000 Miles by Vigilantes

New York Times (July 28, 2015)
This heavily reported feature (part of the Outlaw Ocean series) combines videos on scroll, a sea-spanning map, and the intrinsic drama of a ticking clock.

Speaking of sea stories, check out the stunning photos and interactive map of this longform Cambodia Daily piece, from back in May, about Vietnamese squid fishermen who work in floating cane baskets, in the midst of a corrupt ocean.

The New American Slavery

Buzzfeed (July 24, 2015)
On labor issues closer to home, this in-depth feature spirals through the bureaucracy, money, and terrifying consequences of a broken immigration system, backed by tons of linked documents.

Poverty-Achievement Index

Daily Herald and WBEZ (June 25, 2015)

Daily Herald chart

As a new school year approaches, this web app crunches data on a micro and macro level, in Illinois. Search by school or see overall state data to witness the interlocking relationship between income and student achievement. Part of a special report on poverty and education this summer.

I’m No Longer Afraid’: 35 Women Tell Their Stories About Being Assaulted by Bill Cosby, and the Culture That Wouldn’t Listen

New York Magazine (July 26, 2015)

NY Mag Bill Cosby graphic

This one uses intense portraiture, video interviews, and stark graphics that truly show the scope of this story. See this explainer for more on the empty chair.

NASA’s New Horizons Probe Glimpses Pluto’s Dark Side

New York Times (updated July 25, 2015)
The flyby of Pluto continues to amaze us with images (analyzed beautifully here). How could it not? “The piano-size spacecraft traveled nine years and three billion miles to study the dwarf planet and its five moons.”

Wonderful Miscellany

Vice tells us that the tiny cars on the Uber app aren’t actually real, and recent SRCCON participant Meredith Myers goes way back to handwritten data from the Civil War, unfolding the fate of one scrappy Union company.




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