Homework Week 4 (Due Oct 02)

This week you’re going to make a map, do some reading and bring a couple of good pre-pitches to class.

1: Map the data you brought in last week. Check out Amanda’s mapping notes if you don’t remember where to find KML files or Shapefiles. Be sure to give all of your faculty (Amanda, Russell, Nick) edit access on your finished map. Check that the rest of the world will be able to see your map.

Embed your map on a new HTML page. Give your map some context in 50 to 100 words. Cite your sources. Write for a newsroom: don’t say “This map shows,” tell us what we’re looking for in the map and fill us in on what we need to know to understand it. Check your grammar, and your AP Stylebook.

We know you aren’t experts at HTML yet. If you don’t know how to anchor a link, just include the URL in parens after the text that should be linked. So, something like:

Source: Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (http://vaers.hhs.gov/data/index)

You can use <p> and </p> to define paragraphs, but if that feels sticky or is giving you a headache, don’t sweat the paragraph breaks. We’ll do some tidying in class.

When you’re done, create a dataviz directory on digital storage and upload your html page to that directory.

2: Pre-pitch Send us at least two good ideas for your first data driven story. Think about the story you want to tell and the data you need to tell it. Find out whether that data is available. In what form? Talk to a librarian,

3: Read
+ Illinsky, Designing Data Visualizations, Chapter 4: Choose Appropriate Visual Encodings in Library or as a free preview online.

+ Cairo: The Functional Art, Reading part 2: pages 118-129, on Cleveland & McGill’s perceptual accuracy. On e-reserve in Library.

+ Design Principles for News Apps & Graphics, Lena Groger (ProPublica) and note the flowchart she cites on choosing the right type of chart.

+ Extra Credit: Look through some of the examples from a talk on maps from NICAR 2013, given by John Keefe, Dave Cole and Matt Stiles and When maps shouldn’t be maps

Email your pre-pitches and the URL of your map to both professors under the subject “Homework Week 4” by noon on October 2.

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