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  • Eating ham is a cancer risk like smoking is a cancer risk? Nope

    Eating ham is a cancer risk like smoking is a cancer risk? Nope

    Source: Quartz

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  • Could native ads be the solution to the internet’s bad-ad problem?

    Could native ads be the solution to the internet’s bad-ad problem?

    Patrick Howe, California Polytechnic State UniversityWebsite ads fidget, interrupt and mislead. They’re loud and ungainly. They fixate on things you may not care about and they sometimes spread viruses.Like adolescent boys, their designers seem to be confusing annoyance for affection.The current state of website advertising is so bad, in fact, that the controversial – and increasingly popular – type of advertisements known as native ads (which are built to mimic genuine editorial content) may well be an improvement. Controversial but […]

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  • An award-winning student multimedia project produced at University of North Carolina

    A certain number of things I learned at the AEJMC conference

    Eds note: Dan Reimold, who is referenced below, died just days after this was originally published and before I could talk with him further. I just returned from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication annual conference in San Francisco. It’s a big conference, and almost everyone there teaches or researches journalism, so you’d hope to discover some new and interesting stuff there. Here’s what I’ll take away from my time wandering the tough-to-navigate halls of the Marriott: […]

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  • Click on the image for the interactive version

    California Water Use & Wealth: Do the Rich Use More?

    This scatterplot lets you explore connections between water use and wealth in California cities. As you can see, contrary to what most people believe, there’s not much of a correlation. But you can find out where Beverly Hills falls and feed any water-shaming instincts in the interactive, animated version.

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  • One of these numbers is not like the others

    A quick lesson in checking data

    Here’s a quick lesson on why it’s so important to take a critical look at data before using it in a story.California’s in a severe drought. Gov. Jerry Brown has declared an emergency that will require all municipalities to cut their residential water use. The goal is to arrive at a total 25 percent reduction. My data journalism class has been looking at the numbers and at what a cut would mean for our local city, San Luis Obispo.With a […]

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  • How we listen to music

    How we listen to music

    Someone recently sent me an interesting animation from Digital Music News showing how music formats have changed over the past 30 years.  If you check it out you may notice that: It’s pretty engaging It’s a little weird. It’s a bit visually misleading It’s engaging because it’s fun to see how much things have changed. It’s weird because the pie charts change size for no apparent reason. It’s misleading because the pie charts are made with a 3-D effect that […]

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  • What we knew on day 1 of data journalism (Spring ’15)

    What we knew on day 1 of data journalism (Spring ’15)

    Here are the quick-and-dirty results of this morning’s knowledge survey for data journalism.The questions are organized by section, so you can quickly see that, as a class, we think we’re pretty good at basic statistical knowledge and very good at design, but not so good at working with data. You’ll also see spikes as the questions go from concrete to abstract concepts.I hope this serves as a very simple example of the kind of knowledge we can gain from working […]

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  • Testing Google Fusion’s Terrific Network Graph Tool

    Testing Google Fusion’s Terrific Network Graph Tool

    So … I teach a blogging class and the two main lessons I try to leave students with are, first, to serve their audience and, second, to enhance their credibility.But … I don’t always practice what I preach. Probably half of the items I post here are intended just to try things out for myself. An audience of one. I haven’t finished the thought, I just want to try a tool.This post falls in that category. I was in a […]

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  • Recommended for you? Don’t bet on it; the ‘Native’ ad invation

    Recommended for you? Don’t bet on it; the ‘Native’ ad invation

    By Patrick Howe, California Polytechnic State UniversityIn the endless drive to get people’s attention, advertising is going ‘native’, creeping in to places formerly reserved for editorial content. Here’s a piece I wrote for the British/ Australian website The Conversation. From its very name to its sober headlines and public affairs-minded stories, the Christian Science Monitor’s website seems hand built to communicate credibility.So what, a visitor might wonder, is up with those “other” stories on the site, such as the one […]

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  • How far to a grocery store?

    How far to a grocery store?

    Learn About Tableau

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