Robot Journalists or Robot Press Secretaries? Why Automated Reporting Doesn’t Need to be That Clever

Automated content generators, aka robot journalists, are turning everywhere at the moment, it seems: the latest to cross my radar being a mention of “Dreamwriter” from Chinese publisher Tencent (End of the road for journalists? Tencent’s Robot reporter ‘Dreamwriter’ churns out perfect 1,000-word news story – in 60 seconds) to add to the other named … Continue reading “Robot Journalists or Robot Press Secretaries? Why Automated Reporting Doesn’t Need to be That Clever”

Tinkering With Data Consuming WordPress Plugins

Now that I’ve got my own webspace on Reclaim Hosting and set up a handful of my own self-hosted WordPress blogs, I started having a tinker with some custom plugins. I’ve started off with something simple, a couple of shortcode plugins that I can use to embed a simple leaflet map into a post or … Continue reading “Tinkering With Data Consuming WordPress Plugins”

“Local stories of national interest” – New Johnston Press (Data Journalism) Investigations Unit

Complementing the approach of Trinity Mirror, who launched a cross-group data journalism unit back in 2013, Johnston Press has pulled together a (virtual?) Investigations Unit made up from several investigative and data skilled reporters from across the Johnston Press regional titles (press release). The unit’s first campaign is focussed on sentences awarded for causing death by dangerous driving. … Continue reading ““Local stories of national interest” – New Johnston Press (Data Journalism) Investigations Unit”

Pondering a Jupyter Notebooks to WordPress Publishing Pattern: MultiMarker Map Widget

On my to do list for next year is to finally get round to doing something consistently with open data in an Isle of Wight context, probably on isleofdata.com. One of the things I particularly want to explore are customisable WordPress plugins that either source data from on online data source or that can be … Continue reading “Pondering a Jupyter Notebooks to WordPress Publishing Pattern: MultiMarker Map Widget”

Creating a Self-Updating WordPress Post Using WordPress Transients and Data from a Third Party API

In the post Pondering a Jupyter Notebooks to WordPress Publishing Pattern: MultiMarker Map Widget, I described a simple pattern I started exploring last year that used a custom WordPress shortcode plugin to render data added to one or more custom fields associated with a WordPress post; the post text (including shortcode) and custom fields data … Continue reading “Creating a Self-Updating WordPress Post Using WordPress Transients and Data from a Third Party API”

Opportunities for Doing the Civic Thing With Open and Public Data

I’ve been following the data thing for a few years now, and it’s been interesting to see how data related roles have evolved over that time. For my own part, I’m really excited to have got the chance to work with the Parliamentary Digital Service [PDS] [blog] for a few days this coming year. Over … Continue reading “Opportunities for Doing the Civic Thing With Open and Public Data”

If Only I’d Been More Focussed… National-Local Data Robot Media Wire

And so it came to pass that Urbs Media started putting out their Arria NLG generated local data stories, customised from national data sets, on the PA news wire, as reported by the Press Gazette – First robot-written stories from Press Association make it into print in ‘world-first’ for journalism industry – and Hold the … Continue reading “If Only I’d Been More Focussed… National-Local Data Robot Media Wire”

Quick Geo Queries Using Datasette – Fact Checking a Conversation About Local Building Works on the Isle of Wight

A few weeks ago, chatting with neighbours, comment was made about some earthworks appearing along the roadside a couple of miles away, out towards an area that has been licensed for fracking exploration. Concerns were raised as to whether this new earth embankment might be associated with that. It is possible to run queries over … Continue reading “Quick Geo Queries Using Datasette – Fact Checking a Conversation About Local Building Works on the Isle of Wight”