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Are you a unicorn or
a racehorse?
@PaulBradshaw, Online Journalism Blog, HelpMeInvestigate
Birmingham City University and ...
3 things…
• What are unicorns and racehorses?
• Why are we seeing a split?
• How the work gets done
1967: Phillip Meyer
2005: Adrian Holovaty
Meyer was a racehorse.
Holovaty was a unicorn.
Racehorses look for the
story.
http://delicious.com/paulb/benfordslaw
Unicorns help users tell the
story.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpaglSOj9OU#t=0m56s
‘Data journalism’ is becoming meaningless
• Who says ‘computer assisted reporting’ any
more?
• You will never know all the...
“A courtier should have a
detached, cool, nonchalant
attitude, and speak well,
sing, recite poetry, have
proper bearing, b...
“A data journalist should
have experience with
cleaning, manipulating,
analyzing and displaying
data, familiarity with
fina...
http://chooseyourownadventure.tumblr.com/post/80260931984/mummyshark-its-ripped-but-there-still-arent#notes
Choose your ow...
Learn code.
Learn code.
Learn code.
Javascript can help
tell the story
http://ampp3d.mirror.co.uk/2014/02/21/wayne-rooney-earnings/
Learn the tools
Learn the tools
http://chooseyourownadventure.tumblr.com/post/80260931984/mummyshark-its-ripped-but-there-still-arent#notes
What organisat...
Templates
A data unit
A datastore
Flexible CMS
Flexible CMS
A career path
Unicorns and
racehorses can work
together.
3 things…
• Identify the objectives - and
whether you need unicorns or
racehorses
• Solve problems, don’t learn
languages ...
Thank
you.
@paulbradshaw
Online Journalism Blog
Help Me Investigate
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?
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Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?

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Talk at the School of Data conference in Thessaloniki

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Data journalism: are you a unicorn or a racehorse?

  1. 1. Are you a unicorn or a racehorse? @PaulBradshaw, Online Journalism Blog, HelpMeInvestigate Birmingham City University and City University London School of Data, Thessaloniki, June 2015 http://www.flickr.com/photos/30804458@N08/3316400889/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/boston_public_library/6990109980/
  2. 2. 3 things… • What are unicorns and racehorses? • Why are we seeing a split? • How the work gets done
  3. 3. 1967: Phillip Meyer
  4. 4. 2005: Adrian Holovaty
  5. 5. Meyer was a racehorse. Holovaty was a unicorn.
  6. 6. Racehorses look for the story.
  7. 7. http://delicious.com/paulb/benfordslaw
  8. 8. Unicorns help users tell the story.
  9. 9. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpaglSOj9OU#t=0m56s
  10. 10. ‘Data journalism’ is becoming meaningless • Who says ‘computer assisted reporting’ any more? • You will never know all the tools • News organisations choosing their direction: do we build tools, or do we find stories? • Enlightenment polymaths (university) vs industrial specialists
  11. 11. “A courtier should have a detached, cool, nonchalant attitude, and speak well, sing, recite poetry, have proper bearing, be athletic, know the humanities and classics, paint and draw and possess many other skills.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polymath
  12. 12. “A data journalist should have experience with cleaning, manipulating, analyzing and displaying data, familiarity with financial documents, familiarity with JavaScript, experience with R…”
  13. 13. http://chooseyourownadventure.tumblr.com/post/80260931984/mummyshark-its-ripped-but-there-still-arent#notes Choose your own adventure…
  14. 14. Learn code.
  15. 15. Learn code.
  16. 16. Learn code.
  17. 17. Javascript can help tell the story
  18. 18. http://ampp3d.mirror.co.uk/2014/02/21/wayne-rooney-earnings/
  19. 19. Learn the tools
  20. 20. Learn the tools
  21. 21. http://chooseyourownadventure.tumblr.com/post/80260931984/mummyshark-its-ripped-but-there-still-arent#notes What organisations can do
  22. 22. Templates
  23. 23. A data unit
  24. 24. A datastore
  25. 25. Flexible CMS
  26. 26. Flexible CMS
  27. 27. A career path
  28. 28. Unicorns and racehorses can work together.
  29. 29. 3 things… • Identify the objectives - and whether you need unicorns or racehorses • Solve problems, don’t learn languages - I don’t care if you know PHP • Collaborate and share - everyone else thinks they’re catching up too
  30. 30. Thank you. @paulbradshaw Online Journalism Blog Help Me Investigate

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