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April 2014
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Old stuff

April 17

Tonight’s agenda:

  • look at what NPR is doing with new media (post below)
  • return Goldbacher assignment, comments, chart, video
  • check in on status of slideshow content (due next week) and video from food drive, other
  • visit from Prof. Jule Ann Henstenburg; ASSIGNMENT: Write a 200-plus word post on our guest’s visit tonight; the angle is up to you, but remember that your blog talks about how La Salle (and Exploring Nutrition) is working to help solve issues of health, nutrition and obesity in our area. As always give your story a news-feature-style lead, a clear conclusion, write a good (SEO) headline, get some sort of art and include at least two links to other articles or resources. Due on your blog next Thursday, April 17.
  • look at some other instructive slideshows (April 3)
  • either build your show or run a test with slides and audio (March 13), export, FTP, publish_to_web and embed using gigya shortcode (all on April 3; handout for shortcode)
  • collect the four group reporting plans

That’s probably it. Remember to be building content that you cvan use both in your final video and final package/blog post (details next week; both due May 8). I will see about posting an HD version of the Goldbacher and Wingert videos so you can download and get a clip included. I’ll post video from tonight before next week’s class.

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New digital tools

Thought I’d point you to a key site called EducationShift, part of PBS’s MediaShift effort. This piece notes some new digital tools that E4ric newton suggests working journalists try.

PBS initiaitve

PBS initiative

This is a tough landscape to navigate—one year’s Twitter is next year’s Everyblock—but you should keep an eye on what the industry is following.

I have played with Videolicious, so will cover that in the remaining weeks. Other j-blogs suggest that journalists need to master both medium- to long-form video, and quick video for breaking news, which is where Videolicious comes in.  Note that several of these are paid.

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April 10

Tonight:

  • last call for posts on Dr. Goldbacher’s visit
  • look at her slides and video and video download add-on’Jon Matos will continue his duiscussion of video including the summer project from last year
  • other video resources including:

     

  • planning for slideshows and videos for food distribution (see Assignments)
  • work on group reporting plan (see assignments)
  • slideshow workshop, embedded etc. planned for next week
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Dr. Goldbacher

Here is the video from last week’s class. Note that audio levels are low—last time you might recall with Tom Wingert he was in front of the desk. So that slight distance makes a difference. You can download this and use a bit of it in your groups video, and try to boost the audio during post-production. Try viewing this in YouTube as opposed to here and note differences in audio and video playback. Try the settings gear in YouTube to set it at max (480p in this case).

For that I recommend this download Add-on for Firefox.

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Dr. Goldbacher's slides

Here are Dr. Goldbacher’s PowerPoint slides from last night’s presentation. I’ll post a video to YouTube video eventually, probably early next week. So watch this space.

Also no news yet on plans for next weekend. And slideshow deadline as we said last night is to be determined.

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April 3

Main areas for tonight are planning for slideshows and video, prep for our visitor at 7, the “press conference,” and post assignment, and looking at slideshow design and tutorials, then practice with my photos and sound file, and try embedding a test in your blog. A reminder that we will be in lab in Holroyd tomorrow from noon to 2 (room 190, up the short stairs past Mac classroom, DArt student lab = 190).

First, two issues of interest: the earthquake bot story (last week); something called paper.li, sort of a self-publishing system

Then the main agenda:

  • listen to a few minutes of well-mixed audio: Mike, Bethany, Connor
  • who has been on a “shadowing” trip and where
  • plans for covering food distribution days (Friday, April 11 and Saturday, April 12); these will be part of individual slideshows if needed,  and group videos
  • prepare cameras, questions, issues for guest (who is she? what’s her job title? where does she work? what are her specializations?)
  • guest 7 p.m. 15 minutes presentation, the Q&A (that’s your part)
  • ASSIGNMENT: Write a 200-plus word post on our guest’s visit tonight; the angle is up to you, but remember that your blog talks about how La Salle (and Exploring Nutrition) is working to help solve issues of health, nutrition and obesity in our area. As always give your story a news-feature-style lead, a clear conclusion, write a good (SEO) headline, get some sort of art and include at least two links to other articles or resources. Due next Thursday, April 10.
  • break
  • slideshow examples; tutorial from Mark Johnson (sidebar) and visit the Soundslides online manual
  • work with stills/sample images (March 27)
  • how to embed (need “gigya” shortcode [handout, also here]; try that on your Other or tech page.

Soundslides stuff from earlier posts::soundslide-img3

Go to Soundslides (our software, and like Audacity, sort of the standard, powering for example New York Times shows), support and Online manual, try e.g. Lower thirds and video tutorial (pro version only so that means in lab)

  1. Grad student at UC Berkeley (note Soundslides was not registered) [WE SAW this one last week]
  2. Indiana student who was new to multimedia
  3. Indiana student who had a good deal of experience at photography.
  4. One from our Great Migration class of 2011 (also unregistered, note “headline here” and note the URL)
  5. One from last year’s class when they covered the Easter Food Drive in a slideshow (we will do it as part of the final videos)
  6. One from the LA Times on a dying man

You’ve got a Soundslides handout by Michelle Johnson from Gaylord Institute/AEJMC seminar. I’ll also link to another rubric for the images (Sue Robinson, Wisconsin) and a PDF on video and audio storytelling by Mark Hiland (also Gaylord Institute/AEJMC seminar).

Here are some other powerful examples from NPR (1 ),  and this which could help with your final project, as well as a student project from Prof. Culver that has one instructive audio flaw. And here are two great checklists from Brian Storm: 10 Ways to Improve your Multimedia; 10 More Ways; for any multimedia project, but that mostly refer to slideshows.

Don’t forget the Journalist’s Toolkit intro to Soundslides and Mark Johnson’s Audio Slideshows video (also in sidebar).

  • explanation of how to make sure controls are always showing (make sure your browser’s View->Zoom is at 100% or Reset)
  • try adding some lower thirds (Audio tab), a Headline (Project info) and changing the Template including transitions; try a bit of Ken Burns (zoom effect) which is Slide Info-Movement
  • Make one text and a final credit slide in Photoshop and add those to your slideshow (Slides->Add image); recall from assignment 500 X 375 pixels at 72 ppi
  • Save as and name the folder before you hit Save so it’s not just called project; note that you will get a whole bunch of files and folders, with
    project.ssproj as the file to relaunch, if you want to continue editing (recommended over opening Soundslides first); if you want to view it, launch the index.html file
  • Export, which will produce a publish_to_web folder inside your project folder; again you might want to rename it later; this one also has an index.html file you can launch; when you FTP to alpha.lasalle.edu you should send the whole folder up; say you renamed it food_drive, then your URL will be of the form:http://www.lasalle.edu/~beattyj1/food_drive/That will automatically launch the index.html file
  • Start with the Soundslides embed tool if you want the show to display directly in your blog, but that is not for .com sites (that you all have), just for .org sites (that I have). YouTube embeds via a different tag <iframe> than does Flash <object> and <embed> , and those are the ones that WordPress removes. Jon found a work-around that involves a WordPress short code. I’d rather not post it on the course blog, so check here: WordPress.com ForumsTags → gigya shortcode or, this post in the forums (second one down). And here is Word file with instructions and code before and after (also as a handout). When embedded you will see it in your blog :

Recall that I pasted the embed code supplied by the Soundslides embed tool (link above) into the Text window of the dashboard, not the Visual. Also you can do more before you embed (resize it, etc.) and you should pick a template in Soundslides that fits your color scheme.

  • Your final slideshow post will include the following:
    • Write a brief intro—make it grabbing, enticing. Make people want to watch the show
    • Set appropriate tags and categories
    • try for reasonable file sizes on your photos, although Soundslides makes smaller versions for the Web
    • include at least one title/credit/info slide done in Photoshop
    • FTP to alpha.lasalle.edu (password is 12345_abc version) and use the embed tool and gigya code above to get it in your blog; while you’re there, try to set a reasonable size, background to match your blog etc. As a backup, link to the folder e.g. http://www.lasalle.edu/~beattyj1/food_drive/

 

 

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March 27

First, a quick issue to discuss: LA Times earthquake story written by a bot

Then the agenda:

  • return and discussion of three assignments: inforgr.am; nutrition labels; audio
  • assignment of teams for the final video project (and any other planning or sharing as you see fit); you will still be doing individual slide shows (let me know if you went with a partner and want to share photos) and individual story packages that include your slideshow and group video;
  • updates on food drive/slideshow trips; there are openings Friday and Monday
  • after a break, Jon Matos will give us a session on video, with two instructive videos 1, 2, demonig the Panasonic cameras we have, and the project we did asa  followup to last year’s class
  • then plan for the press conference, any other issues with site visits
  • look at slideshow examples (February 27 post)

Remember to download the free version of Soundslides. We will also have lab time next week to work on those.

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SoundCloud post

So I finally joined(via Facebook) and uploaded a track. Here is the player with an image and adjusted color of the button:

 

That was with an <iframe> on my .org site, though. You need to use the shortcode on its own line like this:

[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/91923946" params="color=00cc11&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_artwork=true" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]
See wordpress.com instructions.

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March 13

Quick agenda:

  • no class next week
  • return of HTML/PHP
  • reminder to finish nutrition labels post by tomorrow morning
  • last chance to post audio either in WordPress or Soundcloud
  • finish infogr.am due tonight as well
  • probable visit from LGU students and Bill Durham, La Salle Community liaison in preparation for slideshow assignment
  • slideshow assignment
  • handout on Soundslides and possible practice with the images below
  • look at other slideshow projects (Feb. 27)
  • be prepared for guest Prof. Jule Ann Henstenburg next class (March 27).

 

You’ve got a Soundslides handout by Michelle Johnson from Gaylord Institute/AEJMC seminar. I’ll also link to another rubric for the images (Sue Robinson, Wisconsin) and a PDF on video and audio storytelling by Mark Hiland (also Gaylord Institute/AEJMC seminar).

Here are some other powerful examples from NPR (1 and 2),  and this which could help with your final project, as well as a student project from Prof. Culver that has one instructive flaw.

Don’t forget t Mark Johnson’s Audio Slideshows video (sidebar)

I created a demo of a trip along the King’s Way in Prague (Soundslides version).

The King's Way, Prague

The King’s Way, Prague (click image to launch).


You need to be able to:

  • download the images above
  • play them as a slideshow on the desktop to get a feel
  • sketch out a script to go with them; about 3 to 5 seconds per slide, aiming for about 45 seconds to a minute total
  • use this audio file to build on (Right click, Save Link/Target as—don’t try to open it
  • follow the handout to import the photos and audio
  • add a headline, some titles, a caption, a lower third, adjust the timing of some slides, change the order of some slides, delete at least one slide
  • export to the Web and view (click on the index.html file)

We’ll keep going with this and related video tips next class. We’ll also be setting up teams and discussing plans for interviews in the field.

Because we will want to capture video during the preparation stage,  Jon Matos will be discussing plans for video training next class, including Friday labs on Final Cut Pro in Holroyd 167 (stay tuned to the Schedule page).

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February 27

OK—hope you are all up on what happened with the new nutrition labels. Here is tonight’s agenda:

  1. take a look at the posts yesterday and assign you the next Nutrition Issues post: 200+ words on what was actually decided, with some art (I took my own picture of a yogurt label) and at least two  links to other sources. One of those should be a story that you are summarizing or working from e.g. the Politico piece; one probably should be Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move another could probably be the Facts Up Front site that the food industry has created (we’ll poke around that a bit);
  2. an interactive info graphic that illustrates food labeling (most likely calories) in some way; there are several free sites such as easel.ly, visual.ly and infogr.am. (What countries are these sites hosted in?) We will use infogr.am to create one that might look like the one shown here (I did this with data from Germantown ZIP codes that we will look at after break).
  3. to help, here is a neat piece on food calories from food carts in Philly from Axis Philly, and an article on food calories at McDonald’s; the basic procedure is to: create an account at infogr.am, verify it via email, try New Chart; select Treemap; double-click the generic info to add a title and edit the content; create some data for now in Excel on Food item (col. 1) and calories (col. 2); copy and paste that into infogr.am (NOTE you can do this with two sheets so you could compare McD’s calories to the food cart ones with radio buttons it will create; test with the eye at top left; publish button, top left; View on the Web; get embed code; paste that into the Text window on your dashboard; Publish to WordPress (don’t go back to Visual till later)

  4. finish editing and posting the audio if you haven’t; see posts below on how to post with a WordPress player, or a link to SoundCLoud;
  5. last chance to finish posting the HTML/CSS page and the PHP page to your Other Stuff page; be sure you have working links and that they are linked to text such as Here is my experiment with PHP.
  6. if we have time, we’ll start looking at some examples of slideshows that we’ll dive into after break; you will be asked to include a story from one or more of the organizations in the GHN, so take a look back at that handout and see if you might want to make a call ove break.

We will use Soundslides (our software, and like Audacity, sort of the standard, powering for example New York Times shows). For now, take a look at their site, support, etc., and these examples:

  1. Grad student at UC Berkeley (note Soundslides was not registered)
  2. Indiana student who was new to multimedia
  3. Indiana student who had a good deal of experience at photography.
  4. One from our Great Migration class of 2011 (also unregistered, note “headline here” and note the URL)
  5. One from last year’s class when they covered the Easter Food Drive in a slideeshow (we will do it as part of the final videos)
  6. One from the LA Times on a dying man
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Nutrition (and assignment) heads-up

 

Do calories really count?

Do calories really count?

I’ll post a full schedule tomorrow, but for now, you should start following the story about new nutrition labels being proposed by the White House Thursday.

This is part of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move initiative, which you should be following for your blog. So keep an eye and an ear out—you will (surprise!) need to do a short post about it over break.

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Feb. 20-I

Hope you all enjoyed the storm—19 inches in Allentown in two days.

The plan, then, is to

  • discuss the Patch post (see Feb. 13);
  • blast ahead with the audio assignment (see Assignments page). It will still be due at the end of the day next week, Feb. 27, so we don’t extend over spring break. As always, I will look for assignments Friday morning, so you can finish things up and post them during the day Friday and still meet deadline. I expect most of next week to be work on the audio assignment;
  • I’ll also hand back and comments on previous work;
  • we will give folks a last chance to get the PHP and HTML/CSS files linked (most of you probably left the files on your lab computers);
  • we will talk a bit about recording audio (see Briggs, Chapter 7 and tips under Audio I and II last week);
  • we will do some hands-on with Audacity. Three handouts to help.

Speaking of previous work, fully 7 of 16 folks did not follow email instructions and do a blog post on SNAP/the farm bill last week. Snow happens, and your job is to keep up on communication and get things posted if required. It’s the nature of the enterprise. That said, given the unusual circumstances, if you seven, who still have not done that post, get something done before class tomorrow (Feb. 20 by 6 p.m.), you can still get some of the credit.

This is a journalism course, after all.

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Audio extra

Another WordPress player demo, this time with some tips about the Audio assignment itself. And a caution that you should exit the Dashboard if you have inserted code in the Text (HTML) editor; don’t switch back to Visual to take a look as that can mean the code then IS text and won’t function.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

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Audio II

 

Audacity

 

Olympus saves files as WMA (Windows Media Audio) which Audacity can’t import. You’ll need to come to the front (or Center for New Media) to convert your files to .WAV or MP3 to bring into Audacity. I’ve got an app called Switch to do that, which you can download for a brief free trial (lasts longer on a Mac).  Today or next week we will experiment with these files: a prerecorded mic clip; a music clip; try to produce this result.

Some tips

  • Try the timeshift tool (double arrows) if you want to move some of your narration in between quotes
  • select, go to Effects->Amplify as another way to adjust sound besides the Envelope tool—can also decrease volume here
  • Effects -> Fade In and Fade Out are the only others you should need although you might try Noise removal (see handouts)
  • you can do the export to MP3 without using Quick Mix (in the handouts)
  • split any stereo track, then just delete (use X) rather than convert to mono
  • the spacebar plays and stops in most AV editing software
  • you have already found Record (red button); use Skip to Start/END (Purple arrows) to move around
  • be sure the Project Rate (bottom left corner) is 44100 Hz; you’ll need that setting for Soundslides later
  • don’t forget to locate the Audacity project file (.AUP) the data folder, your original file from the recorder, and your exported MP3
  • we will upload from a URL (see Tech Notes page); you will have to write a short piece of code in the visual editor that looks like this in square brackets []:
    audio:http://www.lasalle.edu/~beatty/402/culver_package_sample.mp3|bg=0x0000ff|righticon=0xcc0033

See these links for how to post audio and use SoundCloud. For posting to WordPress, you need to FTP the MP3 file to alpha.lasalle.edu (remember PSWD = 12345_abc). For SoundCloud you’d need an account and then upload to their site.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

You can also try adding some HTML color codes to the end of your shortcode (test this on your WordPress.com). The code after the 0X is RRGGBB (2 red, 2 green, 2 blue), so I used  |bg=0x0000ff|righticon=0xcc0033 ] which makes the background 0000ff=blue (small line shows through) and the right arrow cc0033=red . Compare the first one to the standard player:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Paste your WordPress shortcode into the Visual editor (not Text). It will look like this (my code has audio:)

[audio http://yourfileswebaddress ] No space after the first [ but one space (no more) before the final ]. Note if there is no space it assumes that the ] is part of your URL, so the player can’t find the file.

Be sure to put your exact URL in (Q: what will that be?) after you FTP the file to the alpha server. Don’t use the example from WordPress (it’s mattmullenweg-interview.m4a Q: Who is Matt Mullenweg?). See if you got a Playlist editor.

Back this up with a standard link: Play audio.

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February 13

As outlined in an email today, if we are canceled you will still

  • check the course blog; read article on Patch.com
  • Patch, formerly of AOL

    Patch, formerly of AOL

  • be sure you have finished and FTPed the HTML/CSS and PHP files and linked to them on your Other page (see revised instructions Jan. 30 Part II post)
  • finish your farm bill/SNAP 200-word post by Friday a.m.
  • take a look at the links for audio, including the new post Audio II; try to get some interviewing done and bring files to class next week; note that the deadline for the Audio assignment is now Feb. 27

If we do meet, I will give back the Photo assignment with some comments, and do some demos and hands-on of mixing with Audacity (see Audio II above). I will have some handouts and files to practice with.

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Feb. 6

Agenda for this week:

  • finish the HTML/CSS/PHP and FTP them to a page (e.g. Other or Tech Stuff); be sure these are up by next week, Feb. 13
  • hand back and go over Tom Wingert posts; note lessons for later
  • get a handout on AP style for subsequent blog posts;
  • assign another post on issues connected to nutrition looking at takepart.org and in particular SNAP, using a Morning Call handout and one other piece of your reporting (minimum 200 words, add some art, good headline, AP style, check your facts and spelling)
  • begin audio on the street; a key start for us is a handout from Brian Storm’s Media Storm site and blog

Media Storm

Media Storm

More tips:

  • when your subject is talking SHUT UP!!!! No sounds, “umms” grunts. Nothing.
  • test your equipment from CNM (Olympus) or Communication Center (H2)
  • take some notes (e.g. good quote at 2:35)
  • we’ll do the editing in Audacity next week. Go ahead and get a copy on your computer and make sure it has the LAME encoder so you can export to MP3. Maybe take a look through the install and record with Audacity PDF we saw today.

For exemplars, try the Coney Island piece from NYU’s graduate Pavement Pieces site, and this from Prof.  Culver (from Poynter/Wisconsin) that intersperses narration with interview (but right now her interview audio is breaking up):

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

Maybe sample some of the On the Street posts from last spring.

Also take a look around this free course from the Poynter Institute’s NewsU site. You might want to practice a bit with it before you go into the field.

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Jan. 30 Part II

First the overview:

 

  • there’s a visit from Mary Kay Meeks, executive director of Face to Face next Tuesday, Feb. 4 12:30 in the Dunleavy Room (Union); you are welcome to come, shoot some photos/video
  • all blogs are up on the sidebar
  • look at the items to check in Part I below
  • check in on the photo assignment and blog post due next week, noting Vimeo page, the Journalist’s Toolkit and Mark Johnson on cameras and these imgur.com cheat sheets and these tips from Medium.com on using photos in blogs
  • be sure you can optimize a photo in Photoshop and post it on your blog
  • look at the writing tips from copyblogger.com (below)
  • think a bit about crowdsourcing, blogging and online journalsim with Clay Shirky, The Verge and Jay Rosen (below)

BREAK

Then:

  • the crash course in code as noted in the post below
  • the instructions follow; you need these three files linked on your Other page by next class (Feb. 6)

Here is the Homework Assignment for HTML, CSS and PHP:

  1. Create an HTML page in Notepad with the basic skeleton (see Briggs p. 23) that includes: <h1> <p> <ul> <a href=”blahblah” target=”_blank”>
  2. Add CSS rules (Briggs p. 29) for body {} h1 {} in a <style>   </style> element in the <head> element
  3. Save page as test.html in Notepad.
  4. FTP that using Filezilla to Host = alpha.lasalle.edu User name = (standard) Password = 12345_abc (first 5 of SSN, underscore, first 3 of last name); put file IN your public_html folder
  5. View in the browser: URL is of the form http://www.lasalle.edu/~smithj1/test.html
  6. Make a PHP page with the basic HTML skeleton, call it  sum.php with a section of PHP <?php … ?> that declares $a =5; $b = 7; $sum = $a + $b; echo “The total is $sum”;
  7. Also FTP that page to your public_html folder
  8. View in the browser: URL is of the form http://www.lasalle.edu/~smithj1/sum.php
  9. Make links to these twofiles, explaining what you did, on the Other page of your blog

Due Feb. 13 at the end of the day. If you cannot get in to the alpha server, let me know today and I will have IT send you a new password this week

The Filezilla window

The Filezilla window

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Top 11 blogging tips

From copyblogger.com, a good place to know. You can read more about it in their post.
11 Essential Ingredients Every Blog Post Needs [Infographic]

Like this infographic? Get content marketing advice that works from Copyblogger.

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Jan. 30-1

Agenda for part one today. Be sure you are good with the following:

  1. Be able to optimize a photo in Photoshop
  2. Be able to post photos to your blog (Add Media button above the ribbon)
  3. Continue review of your WordPress blog. Note that I am now on WordPress 3.5 (as are you). Note new options e.g. top left, top right on menu bar.
  4. In Settings, look at Reading to be sure your Blog is the home page and that there is enough of them to see them in the main blog window. Look at Permalinks and set those to Date and Name.  Under General be sure your blog Title and Tagline make sense.
  5. Start your Categories and Tags under the Posts menu and add those to the photo assignment that’s due next week.
  6. Under Posts, be sure your photo post has a reasonable title and Body Title if your theme (Appearance->Themes) has that.
  7. Be sure that you have at least the Admin/Meta/Log-in widget (Appearance->Widgets) in a sidebar.
  8. Explore the options for your Theme—does it allow sidebars, customization, etc.?
  9. Check your Profile and follow the instructions from last week to add a gravatar through WordPress.com (Might be Users->Your profile; or go to WordPress.com, login there and then Settings->Public profile->Change your Gravatar)
  10. Go to Pages->Add New and add a page (e.g. Other or Technical) that you can use to store items that are not part of your blog on food and nutrition.
  11. Go to Posts->Add New and take a look at the Visual and Text (formerly HTML) tabs.

Then we’ll discuss the difference between the Internet and the World Wide Web (they are not the same thing; take a look at this WIRED article and Briggs Chapter 1). We’ll then do some hands on with HTML and CSS (Briggs Chapter 1) . I’ll introduce RSS (and XML, which it’s made of) and PHP, which is what most blogs (such as WordPress) are written in. To give us a common source on these, we’ll use W3Schools.com.

w3schoolscom_gray

(We’ll come back to all this as needed later on.)

Some examples: Here’s an RSS feed I made for a DART class (try it in Firefox). Here is what a PHP test page will show if you post it on alpha.lasalle.edu.

By next week (hoping to do most of this tonight), be able to write a basic HTML page with a CSS rule embedded, and a basic page to test for PHP (sum of two numbers). We will post those to  alpha.lasalle.edu with FTP. The standard FTP client is Filezilla (note the URL). You can also experiment with RSS readers and install one either here or at home. I used CITA but it got buggy, so I switched to feedreader.com.

We’ll also discuss the state of online journalism and blogs a bit using Briggs (foreword, preface, Introduction, Chapter 3), this video from Clay Shirky,  shared from BigThink.com. (Note sharing from this site allows only a link, not an embed.).

Recorded 2009, as a follow-up to the success of his book,  Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations.

NYU sociologist Clay Shirky

NYU sociologist Clay Shirky

The Rise of Social Media.

and what would Shirky think about the CNN/Twitter partnership? What do you think? And what about Jay Rosen’s post that summarizes the bad and good of the new “information ecosystem, ” to paraphrase Shirky?

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Tom Wingert's talk

Here is the talk Tom gave last night. Note if you watch this directly on YouTube the quality is better–any thoughts?

 

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January 23

OK—hope you all survived the snow.

The agenda for tonight:

  • be sure I have the URL for your blog so I can post them in the sidebar
  • go over the basics of your blog to be sure it’s up: Title, tagline, first post, About page, your profile/photo, did you use categories and tags for your post; refer back to Mindy McAdams’ site for this (and later topics);
  • visit from Tom Wingert (more below) and assignment to post on that
  • photo assignment on Urban Food; I have this as a handout
  • go over optimizing photos in Photoshop

For Tom Wingert’s visit, by next class, January 30, have a post of at least 200 words on his visit. Think like a blogger—you will be building a blog on issues of food and nutrition in Germantown, Philly and beyond, so explain how his talk fits in to your semester project. I am shooting video that I will post here so that you can watch for some quotes. There’s a pic in this blog you could use. Think of visuals as well as the text (did you bring a camera?).

 

To help complete your “Urban Food” posting, we’ll use this photo, part of my continuing Florida State Fair series. You need to

  • get a copy (Right-click Save Picture As in IE, Save Image as in Firefox; if photo is a thumbnail itself, use Save Link As in IE or Save Target As in Firefox))
  • open that in Photoshop
  • find out how big the file is in file size and pixel dimensions, and check the resolution (pixels per inch)
  • take a quick look at Auto adjustments for tone, color, contrast
  • optimize the photo in the Save For Web dialog box and make a note of the final file size and pixel dimensions
  • upload the photo to your blog (hopefully, today); I suggest that you go ahead and make a page called Other or Miscellaneous or Technical stuff and put it there
  • see if it will center properly—if not we will look at doing that on the HTML next week (<div align=”center”> ..picture is here… </div>)
  • add a caption to the photo if your theme allows that (you will get a caption under the photo)

When taking your pictures try to keep these tips in mind:

remember the rule of thirds (see third video on this page); keep the main lighting behind you (over one shoulder); vary your shot depth (wide, medium, close, extra close/macro);  move subjects among foreground, middle ground, background; move camera above, below, left, right of the subject; if you have to, crop foreheads, not chins; don’t cut off leading lines; cloudy days are best for outdoor shots. Go back to the photo composition site. Also Mindy McAdams’ Journalist’s Toolbox.

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Tom Wingert on HuffPo

As promised, here are two posts by Tom. As he is coming to speak to class next week (Jan. 23) it would be good if you read these beforehand. Try to come in with some questions.

  1. A Fire Spreads
  2. Why Cooperation is Key to Creating Change
tom_headshot

Tom Wingert

For example, how does his experience as an organizer relate to the health and nutrition issues you will be blogging about?

You will be doing a post on his talk, (assignment to come Thursday), so think about getting at least a photo for use in that blog post. I’ll record it on video and make that available for everyone later on.

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January 16: Week 1

Each week there will be a post or two that will make up our schedule for the classes. Blogs, of course, add the most recent post to the top, so take a look at the date of posting to find the post to start with.

Today, we are going to:

  • talk a bit about blogs and online journalism with the two preceding posts from Poynter.org
  • Assign Briggs Foreword, Preface, Intro, Chapter 2, Chapter 3
  • point you to the ONA Philadelphia page (meetups)
  • set up your individual blog at WordPress.com
  • talk about optimizing and posting photos (Read Briggs, Chapter 6)
  • give you background on your “beat” for the semester
  • give you your first photo assignment (also see Assignments page).

My blog is hosted at lasalle.edu (note the URL), which was done with a “manual installation”  at WordPress.org. You might want to do that after this course if you have a Web host such as GoDaddy.com that will give you your own URL.

Here are the steps for today and next week (we will go back over these and more next week):

  1. Go to WordPress.com and open an account. See this Introduction about what blogging is, and this Getting Started page. We’ll try and pull some some relevant videos from WordPressTv as well such as this one on signing up. When you do this, think about your user name, password and URL as this can’t easily be changed. For example a blog on regional table tennis might be phillypong.wordpress.com. You might want to make it about you as this blog should be used to show your work in journalism, even beyond this course. So maybe beattytales.wordpress.com
  2. Log in and you will see the Dashboard. You will see this a lot. Go to Settings and change the title of your blog, and add a Tagline. Obviously, this is something you can do again later.
  3. Experiment with new themes. If you can get a thumbnail to add later, do that (right-click Save Picture As). Start reading my blog from the earliest posts (third page in) to see how I did along the way. Take a look at this video on Themes, and use the link that should come with your initial blog under Blogroll. There are lots of other sites that supply free WordPress themes such as Dynamic Guru , BogOHBlog and BytesForAll, where I got mine (Atahualpa, which is fairly common).
  4. Create a first post. Explain the blog first—you are creating content about nutrition and La Salle’s Exploring Nutrition project, but also may be commenting about the process, adding other content later, etc. Spellcheck your posts. See Briggs Chapter 2. Go to Posts>Add New on the left side of your Dashboard.  Also take a look at the text (actually the HTML) view.

When it’s up (today, we hope), send me the URL of your blog.

Journalist's Toolkit

For general reference, the Journalist’s Toolkit is a great site where Mindy McAdams of U. of Florida has compiled her teaching resources. Here’s her intro to Blogging. Also always check Mark Johnson’s U. of Georgia video tutorials—this is the Content Management Systems (CMS) one, which is mainly a WrodPress introduction (but note that he misspells WordPress with a lowercase “P”).

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Huff and puff — no trolls here

OK—here’s one more to get us going. The Huffingtom Post last month decided to require all commenters to their site to be registered. Think about that:

  • what is gained by this move?
  • what or who is lost?
  • how will this affect their community?
  • are there alternatives?

Read this piece, also from Poynter and let’s see what we decide. What would our policy be for the La Sallington Post?

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Ethics and the college press

Some food for thought from the Poynter Institute (a place you should get to know). Should college papers stop printing names of students accused or convicted of minor crimes on campus? Should public universities (such as U. Conn) have different policies than private ones (such as La Salle)?

logo_poynter

So here’s the piece on dropping student names.

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May Day

OK. There are a few items left to clear up, and then time if you need to get with your group. These will be:

  • make sure you’ve done the online evaluations
  • get your slideshows back and think about some lessons and the handout I gave for the final videos
  • give you the group evaluation forms for the videos (due next Monday)
  • my writing tips for your final blog post and general amusement
  • recall that we have a meeting next Monday; mandatory, part of participation grade. and a time to collect all the raw video footage and photos.

Think that’s it, in addition to  a reminder to look at some of the data visualization links.

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Twitter for journalists

This one deserves its own post. At the top of of Twitter for Newsrooms you’ll see a link to a 25-page PDF on what they think you should know, and also one for sports reporters.

I’ll also post this in the sidebar as well under Journalism and Social Media.

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April 29 social media

For the rest of these, I’ll just post a few links:

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April 29

Some links left on data, maps to go over from Wednesday. ONA member Ken Blake says no journalism student should graduate without knowing the basics of spreadsheets (Excel) and I’d add databases (Access). So you should be sure you can make your own Excel chart and post it in your final blog post.

Here are two more interesting posts (Washington Post, Boston Globe) that show reporteres using social media to generate breaking news content:

  1. Washington Post on the ricin letters (you know what this refers to, yes?); note the use of Storify; and what happened to the story since this?
  2. Mashable’s look at how the Boston Globe covered the week of the bombings; note Twitter feeds, Vine (6-second Twitter videos)

 

One more mapping resource: Google has a Public Data Explorer that generates maps from datasets it has connected to. So if they’ve done the work, you could use one of their visualizations. For an exercise, try searching Google on Pennsylvania unemployment rates, then click on the map near the top of the results. Add New Jersey for a comparison. Also, see what you get for obesity (should be OECD world data charts). 

Storify is also something you need to know. here’s a quick one I did this morning and here are two pieces on on how to use it for journalism (and this one which describes how to check sources):    

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April 24

OK—the final assignment is up on the Assignments page, and it also links to a rubric that will be used in grading the video component. We’ll take a look at those two documents.

Then it’s last call for slideshows (three people), with some time at the end to resolve those, as well as to allow for groups to continue working. Also, if anyone needs to get a quick interview with Tom Wingert (across the hall), he will be in his office till 2:30.

Then it’s a quick overview of some mapping tolls and options that you can explore later. These include:

  • customizing a Google map (go through the process to create your own similar to the one I did earlier with at least La Salle and your organization, maybe Fresh Grocer; add descriptions try drawing a boundary or shape to show the Exploring Nutrition boundaries
  • USDA’s food access mapping tool (again, get your version of the food desert JPEG I posted)
  • BatchGeo with a test file of the Big 5 (post on your Other/notes page; see my Tech Notes page)
  • Many Eyes with preloaded US Census data from Philly (see my Tech Notes page)
  • Google Fusion Tables (know what they are, look at intro)
  • TileMill (need to download it at home)
  • create your won Excel chart from the data at the Community Health database and compare that (ZIPs = 19138, 19141) to the NIH statistics

For the Google map:

  • Broad Street as the eastern boundary
  • Chelten Avenue as the western boundary
  • Stenton Avenue as the northern boundary
  • Belfield and Lindley Avenues as the southern boundary.

 

And here are links to Jon’s videos of Prof. Henstenburg and Dana Palermo’s visit: part 1, part 2 (note how not planning the background affects the video quality; these might be most useful for narration). Note she is Professor Jule Anne Henstenburg.

Obesity data EN and NIH

Obesity data EN and NIH

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