Media Mill Gazette 8

[aesop_content color=”#333333″ background=”transparent” columns=”1″ position=”none” imgrepeat=”no-repeat” floaterposition=”center” floaterdirection=”up”] Dashboards, conferences and beer based on demographics…it’s your weekly media mill mix.



The HEBE team have been grafting away at the beta version of their data dashboard. I think it looks great and was particularly taken with the Leeds inspired widget. It’s nice to see content alongside data and it gives an impression of how a dashboard driven hyperlocal site might work.

It’s interesting to compare the Leeds board with earlier efforts in this space. The London (Leeds is also represented) dashboard was built in 2012 as part of a NeISS (National e-Infrastructure for Social Simulation) project funded by JISC ( . Looking at the board it’s also a lesson in how fragile access to other peoples data can be which might be one of the key value propositions of something like a data mill – your own data shouldn’t disappear!

There’s also a good opportunity in dashboards to set, measure and feedback. I like E ( dmonton city dashboard ( for the way it displays that.Its not uncommon to see this in transparency reports in Canadian and US cities, but its rare to see it made interactive. It might be a hard sell for councils to do this kind of thing given the nervousness around transparency.

** Hyperlocal data conference (

Part of the research work package is to look at dissemination and I’ve been giving that some thought. It’s struck me on a number of occasions how little crossover there is between the hyperlocal community and the open data community, yet here we are working on a project trying to do just that. So I’ve started beating the grass for people interested in getting together to explore this kind of thing. The idea would be something towards the end of this year. Responses, offline and on, have been pretty positive so far. Obviously it’ll be a chance to showcase the project, but if you have ideas or suggestions for people, areas to explore etc. let me know.

** LoveWapping (

One possible contributor to the above is Mark Baynes ( from LoveWapping. A great hyperlocal that has a healthy dose of data related stuff thanks to Mark’s passion for a nice map. If you haven’t seen it (and it’s been a bit of a poster for hyperlocal for a while) It’s worth a look.

** Apple Wants Local TV in Its Web TV Service (

A number of the tech press are speculating over Apple’s plans for a TV service – so far so Apple. But a big stumbling block seems to be Apple’s desire for local content. Of course this is a big issue in the US – local syndication rights etc – but one wonders how this might play out in the UK.

** LocalTV roundup

It also seems that it’s tough times for localTV at the moment:
* The local press are never going to miss a good headline and Esther Rantzen leaving her role heading up solent TV is prime pun territory : ‘That’s strife’ as Esther quits Solent TV (
* The Guardian’s Greenslade tells us that London Live’s Steve Auckland says ‘we can’t keep propping it up’. ( Some interesting views from Auckland.
* Similar views about the challenges of getting channels up and running were expressed when Portsmouth based ThatsTV took over YourTV Manchester and YourTV Blackpool & Preston ( . But it’s not all doom and gloom. ThatsManchester looks set for launch ( with the other rebranded properties due for launch in the summer.

** Data for democracy (

A good watch from the ODI highlighting the work of the Democracy Club and their work on YourNextMP. There are only a few of their Friday lunchtime lectures up so far but it’s a stream worth keeping an eye on.

** Mirror closes it’s data journalism sites (

A week or so ago, the Guardian and Buzzfeed reported that Trinity Mirror’s influential and high-profile socially shareable news and data journalism sites usVsth3m and ammp3d was at risk. The rumours turned out to be true. Sad news, not only for those working there but also for the influence and innovation they created. I’m working with trinity mirror regionals at the moment and it was interesting to see how many of the ideas from these sites were used at a local level and vice versa. They showed that data driven content could work.
A couple of good takes on the legacy here ( and here ( .

** The Social Impact of Open Data (

I meant to include this in an earlier mail out so apologies if you have already seen it. A report for the Sunlight foundation looking at the social impact of open data and digital transparency As well as the report, there is a database of case studies. There are only seven from the UK, including! Still. their four potential benefit categories for project outcomes makes for an interesting benchmark:
1. Educate or inform citizens so that they can make more informed choices;
2. Promote direct civic engagement and increase citizen participation in democratic processes;
3. Gather feedback for policy-makers and/or the private sector; and
4. Monitor and hold officials and/or the private sector accountable.

** Leeds Leisure activities (

I featured Trafford innovation labs interactive ribbon diagram in a previous mailout. It turns out the piece was influenced by Hebe’s super hero visualisation ( . So it’s only fair that the Leeds version gets a look in too!

** Department of Rainbows and unicorns (

Databarb popped up in my feed a week or so ago. Wonderfully snarky data science related cartoons.

** Visualisation and data driven….