Code it. Cover it. Teach it.

The 2013 Journalism Interactive conference, hosted by the University of Florida, was a fast-paced gathering with fascinating speakers and attendees. It focused on pedagogy and practice more than research, but still featured boundary-stretching ideas and experiments.

Journalism Interactive 2013

Keynote speaker Matt Boogie challenged the attendees to imagine a future where information is freed from specific constraints of individual devices. He asked his audience to think beyond ubiquitous computing to see a future of what he termed ‘atmospheric computing.’ In this view of the future, devices broadcast nearly as much information to each other as they receive from traditional media partners.

I had a chance to speculate about what journalism schools (including Medill) should be doing on a great panel with Cindy Royal, of Texas State at San Marcos, and Lisa Williams, Placeblogger. We pondered, argued and agreed about the role of the ‘mythical unicorn’ — the journalism student/professional who reports, codes and designs.

I argued that learning to code is no harder than learning AP style and that teaching students to report and code is no different than learning to report and write. Both are just forms of distribution.

You can read a fun write up of the entire conference on College Media Matters, sponsored by the Associated College Press.

Also Dave Stanton‘s For Journalism KickStarter project had a strong presence [disclosure note: I’m an instructional reviewer and backer of the project]. The online code/journalism concept fit in nicely with the strong instructional bent of the conference.

Journalism & Technology: We’re at the Merge Not the Crossroads

Catch me in Cleveland. I’ll be speaking to the Northwestern Club of Cleveland/Akron tomorrow, June 29th, at the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

The journalism industry is changing at highway speeds. It is obvious that technology changes have reshaped the media landscape but it is not clear what those changes will mean and what direction they are headed. Medill is exploring these changes in several ways, including how programming and human centered design can radically change news creation, consumption and distribute. Using new methods, tools and techniques Medill faculty and students are experimenting with new ways to better reach audiences. Before you miss your exit come see what looms on the horizon.