The bazillionaire founder and CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, paid a visit to the Hill today to press lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to support some sort of immigration reform, which tech companies are interested in so they can get and keep high skilled, often Indian and Chinese labor. But Zuckerberg says his interest in the policy debate has extended to all 11 million estimated undocumented folks in the U.S.
As part of his visit, The Atlantic snagged him for a sit down interview in front of an invited audience. I went as press. The “#ThisTown” crowd attended, so David Gregory was there, all eight feet of him, and so were about 200 other interested Washingtonians.
Among the more interesting things Zuckeberg said was actually about his Mandarin, and how he set up a personal challenge to learn Mandarin and learned enough to communicate basics but found he had a hard time listening and understanding it when others spoke the language.
“I told my wife, I’m really bad at listening in Mandarin. She said, ‘You’re really bad at listening in English.’”
I spent all day wondering what had happened to my iPhone. (It’s an iPhone 5, the model that is going to be discontinued when the 5c and 5s’s go on sale.) I remembered checking it sometime while I was in the car driving to work, and yet, when I got to work it was nowhere to be found. I’d called myself numerous times, and nothing. Eventually I used the ‘Find My iPhone’ tool, which indicated my phone was at home.
So after work, I drove home, eager to reunite with my device. Only, I couldn’t find my phone at home, either. I tried Find My iPhone again. I realized the thing I had “located” earlier in the day was actually my other Apple device — my iPad. The phone was showing itself in the vicinity of my office. So I returned to work and drove back to the parking spot where I parked. That’s when I saw something reddish on the cement. Upon closer inspection, I discovered it was my phone, face down in its red Speck case, with tire marks on it. Amazingly, it still works, though I feel like I’m cutting myself every time I try to type or tweet.
P.S. This is the first in an attempt to write a personal blog post each day this week. I’ve gotten away from keeping this blog up, so I’ve given myself a small, measurable goal of publishing an observation or an inane happening from each day this week. As I am writing this, it occurs to me I’d also like to pick out the best thing I read each day to share with you. Today’s favorite read is an excellent meditation on evil and the non-morality of Breaking Bad’s Walter White, by my colleague Linda Holmes at NPR’s Monkey See blog.
— Richard Callow (@publiceyestl) September 16, 2013
To be clear, I think nursing is awesome. I truly enjoy providing both physical and emotional sustenance for Baby E in one loving act. It’s really no sweat, either, since Eva is my only baby. My Chinese great-grandmother nursed seven (7) babies in total, earning her the respect of many generations and lasting evidence of her hard work — mom tells me my great-grannie could actually fling her drooping boobs over her shoulders. Impressive on many levels, that lady.
But the difference between nursing a baby and pumping milk for a baby is like the difference between visiting Venice and going to the Olive Garden. Pumping is tedious and soulless and in my case, always really awkward when I emerge from the lactation station and make eye contact with the national security guys who surely overheard my pump as they were discussing war and Syria and what not.
I am glad I had a daughter, because maybe one day she will have a baby of her own, and she, too, can experience the wonder and the weirdness that is motherhood.
The spawn, the spouse and I just got back from NewsFoo, an unconference put on by O’Reilly Media and the Knight Foundation. The 150-ish attendees are all involved in technology and/or journalism in an interesting way and I’m certain I was the dumbest person there.
If you’ve never unconferenced, the main idea is that at more traditional and scheduled conferences, all the best connections and interesting conversations end up happening at lunch or during coffee breaks. So unconferences aim to foster the coffee break vibe for an entire weekend by only setting session start and end times — the session topics are all pitched and plotted by the attendees after they arrive. No Powerpoints, no formal presentations, no nonsense. Below, some photos, and after the jump, notes from the Foo and links from my animations session.
A big thank you to the two Angies — Angela Kim of Yahoo! and Angie Goff of NBC Washington — for paneling it with me today at the UNITY Journalism convention. UNITY brings together the minority journalism organizations for one giant confab every four years, and I’m really happy to have moderated this (hopefully practical) talk about tools you can use to better engage with your audiences online.
Links and examples from the presentation:
Yahoo! Homes on Pinterest
An example of how Yahoo! developed an identity on Pinterest.
Marketplace: Your Neighborhood Through Your Eyes
A Public Insight Network project using photos to tell a story. Any news organization can get involved with the Public Insight Network by contacting American Public Media.
Yahoo! Sports on Instagram
An example of what you can do with your reporting team’s photos on Instagram.
Down But Not Out
How Yahoo! Finance aggregated user-generated content on a simple, free Tumblr.
Allows you to update a story in the field or set the scene before a liveshot for your Twitter/Facebook audience. You can also capture moments during commercial breaks.
Demonstrating Free Apps – “App of The Day”
To better integrate tech products with your television audience, most newsrooms have the capability to allow talent to introduce and demonstrate free apps.
Encourage the audience to interact with you ask questions. Also builds your own social media brand.
Google + and Google Hangout Tutorial
KOMU-TV in Columbia, Missouri rocks their Google+ presence. This quick video tutorial shows viewers how to get on Google+ and participate in a hangout.
Questions? Feedback? Leave a message in the comments or tweet me.
Over the past couple of days, the Center for Civic Media at MIT and the Knight Foundation gathered about 200 of the brightest minds in media and technology to talk about data, algorithms and how they’re changing storytelling. (It was also a chance to announce the winners of the Knight News Challenge, which I helped judge this spring. Congrats to the six inspiring winners!)
One of the takeaways from our two+ days together was that in discussing the future of news we are in many ways arguing for a return to the past — a more distributed one, before media producers were aggregated at gatekeeper institutions, and back to a time when storytelling was produced slower, with more context, as exemplified by the presentation of Paul Salopek‘s fascinating plan to spend the next seven years on a slow-reporting journey around the world. And with the big trend toward more data journalism, AP’s Johnathan Stray and others reminded us that data has fingerprints all over it — that data journalism requires many selective decisions by humans, which means “there’s no such thing as objective data.”
Monday, I sat down for an on-stage chat with Knight’s VP for Journalism and Media Innovation Michael Maness and Joi Ito, a Knight trustee, venture capitalist, early tech pioneer and the director of the MIT Civic Media Center. During the conversation about funding trends for information efforts, Michael announced Knight’s new Prototype Fund, part of a a new effort to fail fast in funding new ideas by giving out 50-60 smaller grants for innovative ideas each year. Both men both delivered some memorable gems, and I got to wear one of those motivational speaker type headset microphones, which was the highlight of my week. (You can’t even tell it’s there, it’s so skin-colored and invisible!)
Michael wrapped up some of the big themes that came out of the conference in his closing session on Tuesday. Check out the notes from the liveblog. And Stiles did some great data visualizations on the attendees and the Twitter volume during the confab. More resources/coverage of #civicmedia after the jump:
I like to pretend I don’t actually have any real responsibilities, but I actually did move to DC last year to take a job. It called for launching a new news brand — StateImpact — a local-national network headed up by NPR in DC and staffed by NPR member stations around the country. Last year, StateImpact hired two reporters in eight pilot states to launch a new site in each state. Now it’s off and running.
We continue to train, edit and support the sites and their journalism. In addition, the team here in DC regularly develops features for a customized WordPress platform that is used by every site in the network. The customized platform was first built two years prior, by our sister project, Project Argo.
Argo has now open-sourced its theme(s) and all the plugins they developed to make their reporters lives easier. (StateImpact has more fun tools, mostly geared toward data-driven reporting, which we have yet to open source.) One of the now-public plugins is for link roundups — curated aggregations of the best links on your beat. Team Argo identified these roundups as an important part of a blogger’s daily or twice-daily routine, but a pain in the ass to actually put together because it involves a lot of cutting and pasting and hyperlinking. The Argo Link Roundup tool, which all our StateImpacters use regularly, allows you to create a roundup without ever cutting or pasting a thing.
This is my test drive of the plug in here on HeyElise. But it actually is a collection of the best pieces I’ve read in the last 24 hours. (Especially the story about draft bust JaMarcus Russell.) Assuming this goes well, I’ll be doing more link roundups in the future.
Those of you who know me well likely know I am fascinated by online dating, mainly because I have never done it before and I am afflicted with FOMSS (Fear of Missing Something Syndrome). So here we are at SXSW 2012, where I get to learn about what the online dating terrain looks like, how it’s meshing with new technologies and how it’s influencing the way humans romantically connect. And because journalism is ultimately about connecting with people, the lessons this can teach us about new-new media are in here if you think about it.
THE PREMISE: ”Traditionally, dating sites have used algorithms that rely on user profiles and personal preferences to create matches, but what if the information submitted isn’t true? Sites such as Match.com are evolving their methods to provide more accurate results – like pairing algorithms with user behavior. We’ll hear from innovators in the digital dating world and get unique insights from people who’ve searched for love online. We’ll also see how technology is changing the dating game.” - Session desrciption
HOW ONLINE DATING WORKS: Sign up, answer questions, pay a fee and you get matches. Our moderator/tester registered for a slew of sites. Apparently, eHarmony takes the longest compared to Match.com and OKCupid, and takes much much longer than the newer sites (see below). OK Cupid is apparently pretty cool in that their questions are user-generated and their profiles include some data visualizations. And in recent years, various niche dating sites have started up, aimed at the over 50 market (OurTime.c0m), the Jewish market (JDate) and weed smokers (420Dating).
THE AGONY AND THE AWKWARDNESS: Online dating changed the way people interacted with the internet, helping usher in social networking as users became more accustomed to sharing their lives online. But online dating sites seek almost exclusively to match you up, which can be awkward. Match.com’s Mandy Ginsburg:
“They don’t do it because it doesn’t feel natural. They don’t trust that a computer will allow them to find that perfect love or spark, or it feels like it’s not serendipitous so there’s no romance … so how can we make the whole experience as natural as possible?”