Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mapping census data with batchgeo

Political reporter Charles Crumm decided to build a map for the census data released yesterday.
As you scroll over the map, you can click on different points to see the population change data by community. It's pretty neat. allows you to use an Excel spreadsheet to import the data, removing the time-consuming method of plotting data manually.
Also nice about using to produce this map is that if you prefer to view the data in a list, it's included that way underneath the map.
The only thing I don't like about the map is that there's no public embed code. Embed codes are sent directly to a person's email.
Check out the story: Community leaders react to newly released census data

View U.S. Census data for Oakland County in a full screen map

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Pick a tool, learn a tool, teach a tool: It's Evernote for me

IdeaLabbers are working on creating a toolbox for our fellow staffers. We've been asked to pick a tool, learn it and find a way to teach it to others.
For me, it was a no-brainer.
"Oh look, here's Evernote," I thought. "Well, I wanted to learn it and it looks like now's the time."
From "Best iPad Apps" by Peter Myers
Let me clarify. I got this book to review called "Best iPad Apps: The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders" by Peter Myers — the image you see here is a scan of the entry for Evernote — and after reading about the app, I was pretty excited.
Evernote is ranked by the book as the "Best App for Gathering Research." Being the type of reporter who loves the research gathering process, this seemed right up my alley.
I downloaded the free version of the app on my iPad and figured I'd be Evernoting it away in no time.
It opens up to a blank page with a little text letting me know that I can save any search I want to by creating a saved search. How do I do that? No idea. I tried figuring it out that night. No luck.
So far, I've figured out how to create a new note and add photos and audio to it. Not exactly the range of cool stuff I was expecting.
Just like figuring out how to use the ancient version of iMovie on my Mac laptop back when I was in college, I expect this to be a bit frustrating but overwhelmingly worthwhile.
And when it's all said and done, I'll have learned something I really wanted to learn and will make sure all of my coworkers can have an easy-breezy time learning and making use of this.
Stick with me for updates and please, if you've got some tips on using Evernote, leave me a comment!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Live feed from Hawaii News Now on tsunami: a must have

We've had the Hawaii News Now livestream up on our website since early this morning and have been tweeting as we follow along. In a matter of just a couple hours, our tweets have been clicked on almost 3,000 times.

We're also finding local folks with family, friends in Hawaii and California through facebook.

This is totally engaging. I love the things we can do with technology.

Check it out:
Live feed on The Oakland Press website

Live TV : Ustream