Nerd Alert Issue 11: It’s Dangerous to Go Alone

It's dangerous to go alone! Take this.


What we're reading this week

  Adam: Even if you don’t work in public media, a new weekly podcast from called The Pub is worth checking out. A few episodes in and producer Adam Ragusea has covered topics ranging from how pick theme music to how women, people of color, and everyone else can sound more like themselves on the radio. Here’s the link to subscribe in iTunes.

  Ben: The FAA has proposed rules for drone operation in the US, and we're going to start seeing a lot more drone footage in news. But drones have more uses than just taking photos: check out these 3D maps of the Donetsk airport, created using drone footage. What can you do that isn't just a plain photograph or video?

 Denise:  Where do you even start looking for stories in all that Census Bureau data? Anthony DeBarros breaks down the household and relationship questions in this post from the Source blog and, with specific tips on where to find the most relevant data.

  Kaeti:  We could all stand to be better listeners. Sarah Green collected some classic wisdom from the HBR archives and what she found is as relevant as ever. Turns out, it all starts with actually caring what other people have to say.

  Meredith: "I read the news today, oh boy." The Guardian enlists Will Bulter of the Arcade Fire to write a song a day based on a Guardian article to be premiered on their site. Inspired in part by Bob Dylan, his week long residency begins Monday, February 23rd.

  Ryan: I've been using submodules for quite a while now and never really had a problem with them. However, after reading Christophe Porteneuve’s post, I think I may have developed a mild case of Stockholm syndrome. This post covers the pros and cons of using git submodules to account for a project's external dependencies. It’s worth a read if you’re starting a new project and considering the best approach to this problem.

  Will: User interface design is the responsibility of everyone involved in making a piece of software. That’s why keeps a running list of ideas to make interfaces better. Not every idea is great (and might not apply to every product), but each has its merits.

  Bert: See Spot. See Spot run.

This week's guest contributor: Erin Harper, Chicago Tribune — @ehrpr

As a multimedia editor at the Chicago Tribune, I often make decisions about publishing graphic content. This piece by Storyful outlines their method of vetting sensitive content as a news agency. But it also reminds us of our complex responsibility as journalists to balance being both analysts and messengers. The question we face is not just whether or not to publish, but also how to publish. As our industry evolves, we must always be having this conversation.

Each week we ask someone from outside our team to contribute a link, tool or idea. Are you our next guest star? We think you might be. Send us a note at

We Made A Thing

Our projects, manifest


Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 10.19.44 AMWe’re excited to be working with The Public Media Platform (PMP) on a new WordPress plugin for their API to make it easier for public media organizations to share content with one another. We’ll be working on the plugin over the next couple of months and plan to release the final plugin late this spring. Look for future announcements as we roll it out over the coming months.

Shout outs

In anticipation of NICAR 2015, Ben Welsh and friends have updated their wonderful step-by-step guide to publishing a news app for the first time. Check it out: First News App.

Some Other Stuff

Gather ye rosebuds

LISTEN: This week’s soundtrack is brought to you by Sleater-Kinney with an assist from the folks at Bob’s Burgers.

FOOD & DRINK: (Re)discover this nearly-lost style of beer: Gose.

WATCH: Your weekly dose of cute/majesty.

GIF: Fin.

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