Nerd Alert Issue 18: It’s GitHub’s Birthday!

Github turns 7 years old today!


What we're reading this week

  Adam: I don’t agree with everything Eugene Wei has to say about why tech companies are largely beating publishers at their own game but he makes so many good points that I think this take on the recent rumblings about Facebook hosting content directly for publishers is worth reading carefully and digesting.

  Ben: Lego launched a new video game this week, and forgot to buy its domain name. A journalist bought the domain, and now it’s an ethical discussion. What do you think of the journalist’s actions, and the community reactions?

  Denise: Cindy Royal, a Texas State University professor and recent Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University, makes a case for coding to be taught across disciplines at colleges. Coding education, she says, will help support the future of journalism (and so many other fields).

  Kaeti: As a distributed team, we do a lot of virtual client meetings. Erika Hall’s article on presenting design remotely is so relevant to my interests. Her core advice can apply to any presentation or meeting: get to know your stakeholders, stay in constant communication, and maintain clear expectations.

  Meredith: My background in literacy attracts me to the idea of programming languages and toolkits for the mind. Language, vocabulary and grammar impact your perspective and your strategies to solve problems.

 Nick:, the people behind my favorite hip-hop lyrics site, are now taking their mastery of annotations and applying it to all kinds of web content. John Resig (the creator of jQuery) annotates the original jQuery code from 2006, and here are notes on Obama’s State of the Union Address. It’s still in beta, but I hope to see this or a spin-off as an open platform for commentary on the web. Annotate all the things!

  Ryan: The INN Nerds have been looking at ways to simplify and streamline documentation of our visual styles in a way that will allow us to get new projects off the ground more quickly in the future. See this post about living style guide tools for a thorough list of tools meant to help lessen the effort required to document your favorite flavor of CSS and keep said documentation up-to-date.

  Will: PDFs are great, except when you scrape data out of them. Jeremy Merrill shares his solution to this problem, using the command-line version of Tabula to build reusable scrapers for automatically generated PDFs. Use them as a model, and liberate your data from PDFs too.

  Bert: One of my cousins is going to space on Monday!

We Made a Thing

Our projects, manifest

A screenshot of the new homepage, featuring the navigation and two celebrity photos in the featured image spot. launched their redesigned site this week! We're happy to see another site using our work.

Shout Out

Work we admire by our journalism peers

To all our friends who participated in #SNDMakes, you’re awesome! We look forward to seeing what you come up with for improving picture stories today.

Some Other Stuff

Gather ye rosebuds

LISTEN: The tick, tick, tick of doom.

COOK: What if you don’t like thick, spongy pancakes? Try this Norwegian recipe.

WATCH: This month's News Nerd Book Club book was Indi Young's Practical Empathy. We were pleasantly surprised when she visited the book club hangout to talk with us. Here's a video of her talk about practical empathy at UX Lausanne 2014.

GIF: From member site Wisconsin Watch’s fracking sand gif collection comes this masterpiece:

A line art animation of a bull, with horns made of sand. The bull's horns flex up and down, rearranging the sand. When the horns are pointed up, the bull snorts, and grains of sand fly out of its nostrils.