I’m pleased to announce the creation of an informal working group on newsroom technology for students in the journalism program at Boston University. This semester we will cover data journalism, immersive features built with modern web frameworks, and newsbots. Our goal will be to work together on projects, with the goal of creating projects interesting and useful enough to share.

Organizers: Lisa Williams and Samata Joshi

We’re keeping the group small and participation is limited; if you want to participate, let us know by filling out this form.

When & Where? Groups will happen at 5:30 on the dates below at COM. Register with the form above. Participants will receive an address and room number as well as other details before the meeting.

February 20: Coding Tools & Data Journalism

We’ll install and begin to use foundational coding tools – a version control system (Git) and a text editor (Atom or Sublime Text). We’ll also browse the code repositories of major news organizations and provide an overview of common tools and frameworks used by newsroom technologists.

We will complete a data feature using current data on a real public policy issue.

March 19: Immersives

We will use Bootstrap and Javascript to build an immersive feature package. We might get into using NPR or NYT app templates.

April 21: Bots For News

We will use a Node.js based framework to build an interactive chatbot that serves news to a user.

April 27-29 48in48 Boston

Optional: Join our 48in48 team and use your skills to build a website from scratch in a weekend hackathon benefitting local nonprofits.

Tech Requirements

You will need your own laptop. You can bring a Windows laptop but we may not be able to support you in installing and configuring tools. Best choice: Mac laptop with OSX 10.8 or higher.