A graph showing the number of IEDs cleared from the Afghanistan War Logs Only a couple of years ago, the idea that journalists would need to know how to use a spreadsheet would have been laughed out of the newsroom. Now those benighted days are way behind us and extracting stories out of data is part of every journalist's toolkit of skills.
Tip Sheets: Online & Multimedia (1998-2010)
Data journalism is huge. I don't mean 'huge' as in fashionable - although it has become that in recent months - but 'huge' as in 'incomprehensibly enormous'. It represents the convergence of a number of fields which are significant in their own right - from investigative research and statistics to design and programming. The idea of combining those skills to tell important stories is powerful - but also intimidating.
Back in April, we looked at an ambitious European plan to simulate the entire planet. The idea is to exploit the huge amounts of data generated by financial markets, health records, social media and climate monitoring to model the planet’s climate, societies and economy. The vision is that a system like this can help to understand and predict crises before they occur so that governments can take appropriate measures in advance.