Introduction to open-source GIS tools for journalists: GIS software is expensive, right? Wait, there are open source GIS tools now? And Matt Wynn wrote up a few for Poynter? Let me mash my mouse on that link…
Recent open source work and other projects we’re excited about: Free open source tools from the Chicago Tribune news apps team. Census, Twitter, regional boundary data, etc.
Mmmmm – Add a JSON model to your Django app for easy export.
This was totally useful and up to date with Django 1.0, and helped me build my own form.html.
And suddenly teaching myself another programming language without a very rational reason to back it up.
Thankfully, someone used Google Code Search to find many instances of the word “fuck” in commented out code all over the Interweb. Put a smile on my face. via Joe M.
This is something that’s been on my wishlist for developing wordpress themes for sorta-social networking purposes. I hate sending users away to a login page.
If you answered ‘YES’ to the first question, congratulations, you work at the New York Times, or the Guardian, or maybe a paper running on Ellington. (Yes, yes, feel free to point out your own brilliantly integrated newspaper.com in the comments. Humor me for a moment, mkay?)
But for most of us, that second answer is a reality as newspapers try to race to build and improve functionality that’s built in to more agile systems across the web.
Comments? Yeah, we’ve got a script for that around here somewhere.
And now, the buried lede:
Scott Rosenberg (let’s call him a co-founder of Salon.com to get your attention) has a fascinating post up describing a somewhat academic paper about programming that analyzes the “Big Ball of Mud” style of coding and finds some advantages to it:
Foote and Yoder draw a real-world comparison to shantytowns; they’re ubiquitous because they use abundant materials and require only the most basic skills. Similarly, the Big Ball of Mud “doesn’t require a hyperproductive virtuoso architect at every keyboard.” There may even be a “secret advantage” in its “casual, undifferentiated structure”: “forces acting between two parts of the system can be directly addressed without having to worry about undermining the system’s grander architectural aspirations.”
What do you think?
As a user of a news CMS, you might not notice all the scotch tape and bubble gum, but I’d love to hear from developers and designers about whether you think it’s better to aspire to a clean all-encompassing publishing solution or to just keep dancing dirty and refining the connections between your resources as needs arise.