Journalism code and the people who make it

Tool View Source” for Data Visualizations

"View Source" for Data Visualizations

During the most recent SNDMakes design sprint and prototyping event, teams were prompted to think about how they might expand the news and information design communities. Our team hoped to expand the news and information design communities by giving them a common project for fostering collaboration, and the end result was Visualization Verification View (V³).

Project How We Built the New ProPublica Mobile Apps

How We Built the New ProPublica Mobile Apps

A few weeks ago, ProPublica rolled out new versions of our app for iOS and Android. (If you haven’t tried them yet, stop reading this and go download them immediately!) Rebuilt and redesigned from scratch, they’re the result of a fundamental rethink that kicked off late last year.

Roundup events Event Roundup, May 16

Event Roundup, May 16

This is the week to enter the SRCCON ticket lottery, and learn about Panama Papers at two Hacks/Hackers events in Germany.

Roundup Source Project Roundup, May 13

Source Project Roundup, May 13

Here’s a few things we loved recently: arresting words, opposing parties, how landfills fill in Minnesota, how housing stays empty in China, and more.

Learning typography usability How Typography Can Save Your Life

How Typography Can Save Your Life

Typography is an aesthetic choice, but it’s also an interface element that can help keep drivers and astronauts safe—or put real people in danger. So what can journalists learn from high-stakes typography successes and failures at NOAA, NASA, and the Surgeon General? Quite a lot.

Roundup events Event Roundup, May 2

Event Roundup, May 2

A bunch of conferences this week, plus a Coral Project hackathon.

Roundup #botweek Botweek’s Closing Circle

Botweek's Closing Circle

A few of our favorite bits of thinking and linking around bots.

How-to arduino #botweek Node.js wine How We Made a Bot that Pours Wine on Television

How We Made a Bot that Pours Wine on Television

How I built a WineBOT for NBC News’ Today show that’s powered by a hashtag battle.

Roundtable automation AI what even #botweek bots Do News Bots Dream of Electric Sheep?

Do News Bots Dream of Electric Sheep?

Bots have been making the news more and more lately, partly due to the underlying technology becoming more common, and partly due to bots becoming rampaging racists. PCWorld recently suggested that 2016 may be “the year of the bots.” But if you read the article, all the examples are of chatbots—bots, to be sure, but only a subset.

Roundup automation bots #botweek Code Convening austin When Bots Get Together: Part 2

When Bots Get Together: Part 2

Here’s the second half of our report-back from Austin’s code convening, introducing five more bot-centered open source projects from our participants.

Project emoji bots Twitter #botweek All Aboard the Twitterbot

All Aboard the Twitterbot

The @choochoobot is a Twitter account that posts emoji trains sweeping through emoji landscapes. Here’s what it tells us about making bots these days.

Roundup automation bots #botweek Code Convening austin When Bots Get Together: Part 1

When Bots Get Together: Part 1

Code convenings have been regular events on the OpenNews calendar for a little more than two years now, each of them bringing a small group of designers and developers together to work on projects that fit a particular theme. Given a chance to step away from normal routines and daily deadlines, participants spend a couple days writing code and documentation before releasing fresh open-source projects and updates into the journalism community. The Austin event earlier this month definitely was our largest so far, with nine projects. It was a fantastic mix of people, with developers and designers from all sizes of news organizations, and fields like education, finance, and civic tech. Here’s what everyone is working on.

Project automation bots #botweek Simbot, Give Me Five

Simbot, Give Me Five

At Vox Media, data science and data engineering are working together to build products with editors’ and journalists’ needs in mind. One such experimental product is a Slackbot that enables editors to discover relevant content on demand.

Project automation bots #botweek timelapse Yo Dawg I Heard You Like Bots

Yo Dawg I Heard You Like Bots

The Platte Basin Timelapse Project started in March 2011 with the goal of placing timelapse cameras throughout the basin and documenting time passing along one of Nebraska’s most important water resources. Now, they have more than 40 cameras placed, each taking photos during daylight, every day, every hour, all year long. Over the life of the project, they’ve gathered more than a million images and terabytes of data.

Project automation bots Twitter #botweek What Is the Sound of PunditBot Yapping?

What Is the Sound of PunditBot Yapping?

The best PunditBot can do is imitate cable-news pundits or sports commentators filling airtime with useless predictions, largely because it lacks a human’s domain knowledge and ethical drive to use journalism to inform democracy and craft a fairer society. My experiment with PunditBot makes me bearish on independent robotic journalists (and bearish on human TV pundits) but I’m optimistic for a future of human-robot journalism teams.

How-to algorithms jupyter Python teaching automation Twitter bots #botweek Peda(bot)gically Speaking: Teaching Computational and Data Journalism with Bots

Peda(bot)gically Speaking: Teaching Computational and Data Journalism with Bots

Bots encapsulate how data and computing can work together, in journalism. And when we use bots to teach concepts and skills in computational journalism, we’re actually teaching two kinds of thinking: editorial and computational.

Event automation bots Hello #botweek world. Welcome to Botweek 2016

Welcome to Botweek 2016

Today kicks off the third annual Source Botweek, our yearly push to document the newsgathering bots, Slackbots, Twitter bots, and other automated creations that have emerged from newsrooms in the last year—and to check out a few extras from the makers of less practical/more adorable bots.

Learning Seeing the Error of Your Ways

Seeing the Error of Your Ways

Chances are, you probably think your mind works pretty well. But, in reality, our brains fool us all the time with blind spots and biases. So what can we do about it? Let’s examine how graphics, including charts, interactives and other visual tools, can help show us the shortcomings of our own minds.

Roundup events Event Roundup, Apr 18

Event Roundup, Apr 18

The Coral Project hosts its first hackathon, plus SRCCON call for proposals deadline this Wednesday.

Project open data Python census uber algorithmic accountability open source replicability transparency reproducibility How I Investigated Uber Surge Pricing in D.C.

How I Investigated Uber Surge Pricing in D.C.

As part of my research with the Tow Center, I investigated the geographical and demographic data around how Uber works in D.C., to find out if its wait times varied by neighborhood (and, as a result, by demographic). Here’s how I did it.