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Quotes from #NICAR13

The National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting’s annual conference, NICAR13, was last weekend, and man, so much information and so many projects were shown. Here are some highlight quotes from the sessions:

“One of the ideas we’re trying to impart in our newsroom is Everything Is Data.” — Tasneem Raja on Smarter interactive Web projects with Google Spreadsheets and Tabletop.js.

“I’m Ben, this is my rant.” — Ben Welsh, in his lightning “talk” about… well, you can watch it here:

“The story’s out there, the computer’s my gun and I’m gonna hunt it and shoot it, shoot it.” — Ben Welsh in that same talkrant.

“What makes the CMS hard to work with is it tries to do everything.” — Heather Billings on Jack Gillum, on Using data to investigate sports

“Beat reporting should accrue data.” — Chris Amico on Building data-driven beats.

“As far as news apps go, now they’re mostly edited, and that’s… new.”
“Everyone likes the power and authority to publish, to hit that button and go boom.”
There are hard questions to ask about news apps: “Is this a story, is this an app, does this actually work? What can we afford to say and what can we not afford to say.” — Derek Willis, on From CAR to News Apps and Back Again.

There’s this “hatred and reverence everyone has for their CMS,” — Matt Waite, on Building data-driven beats.

“When you’re designing a news app you shouldn’t just be thinking ‘what does it look like on the page,’ you should also be thinking ‘How can I spread this around the rest of the site?’” — Jacob Harris on Al Shaw on Brian Boyer on Mobile + DataViz: Friends or frenemies?

“Email is basically like a postcard. If you’ve ever seen your password sent via email, that’s a very bad thing.” — Mike Tigas, on Covert reporting using technology to cover your tracks.

“If you’re cynical, keep being cynical. If you’re not, start being cynical. You cannot trust any report that does not give you the underlying basis for checking whether it’s true or not.” — Jon Fleischaker, KY lawyer, on Legal issues, access and big data.

“It’s a couple of sticks of dynamite and a ticking clock away from freaking someone the fuck out.” — Matt Waite, with his sensor measuring how TSA handled his luggage in his lightning talk.

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