Blogs > Life, I wrote.

Life Editor Ivan Lajara talks about living in the Hudson Valley, language, the Web, cats and even politics. But he shouldn't.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

JRC Chat at noon talks about Project Thunderdome

It's Wednesday again! (it seems to happen every week). And that means that members of the Journal Register Company's Idealab - and anyone who wants to - are going to be taking part on the weekly Twitter chat at noon.

Today we will be talking about recent developments in our company — I believe it's called JRC, which stands for "What's All This About Thunderdome?"

We're also going to be talking about the recent hiring of Jim Brady and Project Thunderdome (cue Tina Turner).

If this sounds cryptic to you, its' because, um, it kind of is, so we'll be talking what all this is, what it means to us, to our users (that would be you), to journalism, and how everything is going to work out without the help of Mel Gibson. And we're all going to be doing this on the Twitters, because that's how we roll.

The live feed is posted below. But you can also follow the chat here or here or also here. And you can also check out past chats over here.

If you want to chime in, just post a tweet with the hashtag "#jrcchat" so it can automatically appear below, or post a comment in the field at the bottom of the chat box.

As you can tell, we're totally transparent, and anything goes. It's the new JRC, after all, or I would have been fired a long, long time ago.


As always, you are welcome to participate at anytime you want. And, of course, we're going to have links.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

How to improve your newsroom Facebook page

The (updated with slighly better quality) livestream!

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Monday, March 28, 2011

How to use Twitter for journalism

The livestream (now with better resolution):



(By the way, it should be mentioned that at the end of the session, I got cake).

The links used were:

10 things you need to stop tweeting about - The Oatmeal



Channeling the news brand on Twitter and Facebook - Zombie journalism

Also by Mandy Jenkins, which I didn't get to use, is the most excellent "Accuracy and accountability checklist for social media."

The tools we discussed were Twitter, Tweetdeck and  Bit.ly.

Also, one guide I didn't get to use and should have is the Elements of Twitter Style.

Another guide I could have use but didn't was the intro to Twitter (modified) guide by Idealaber Lee Moran:

Twitter

One more link: Journal Register Company Adviser Jay Rosen, a New York University professor, explains how he tweets professionally.

UPDATE: Fellow Idealabber Kelly Metz of the Morning Journal in Ohio also has a Twittorial:

Twitorial

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How to get free cake with tweets

Friday, March 25, 2011

Zombies needed for filming in Kingston

Our friends from the Hudson Valley Film Commission have just announced that an upcoming filming in Kingston featuring a "world renowned band" is casting extras, featured extras and dancers of all styles (tap, African, breaking, popping, ballet).

Specifically, the commission says, they are looking for "FASHIONISTA CLUB ZOMBIES"

The commission explains:
Time commitments depend will depend on role but may be up to 10 hours for main shoot day.

Date will be announced shortly.

The dress code for this project is critical.
They are looking for FASHIONISTA CLUB ZOMBIES

THE DRESS CODE IS:
Leather, rubber, PVC, glam drag, full evening, Victorian & Edwardian, jockstraps, gothic drag, cyber-wear, religious garb & pagan robes, Jackie T-shirts & flannels, dickensonian beggarwear, Kitty Boots studded panties only, military drag & uniforms, scars & piercings, butch drag for women.
Absolutely no fur coats.
No suits, ties, dress pants or jackets for man.
No rugby shirts or rugby players.
No droopy drag and no bandy clichés.
And as always—no ski wear.

*Also need Michael Jackson red jacket thriller type, Lady gaga type for cameos...
**Project will also need 5-10 old time zombies dress in Night of Living dead middle America garb.

If you are interested, send photo of yourself, resume.
Email Zombie Casting at zombiecall@me.com

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Journal Register Company's CEO, advisory board discussed 'open newsroom'

Some of the things to look forward at the Freeman ...

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Census data

Online Database by Caspio
Click here to load this Caspio Online Database.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

JRC Chat at noon, mobile edition

It's Wednesday, which means that members of the Journal Register Company Idealab and anyone interested are going to be holding the weekly Twitter chat at noon.

Today will be talking about the mobile journalist; what are the best resources and practices to do it well; and how mobile can improve journalism itself.

The feed is posted below.  But you can also follow the chat here or here or also here. And you can also check out past chats over here.

If you want to chime in, just post a tweet with the hashtag "#jrcchat" so it can automatically appear below, or post a comment in the field at the bottom of the chat box.


Since this is a chat about mobile journalism, it is fitting that I'm going to be on the road at noon on today, as I'm attending training for even more new digital initiatives.

So I've tasked my very mean and snarky robot to tweet for me on Tuesday until 2 p.m., but I'll be chiming in here and there if I can while on the road (I'm not driving).


As always, you are welcome to participate at anytime you want. We'll have links, especially the robot.


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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Idealab project

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Another important official announcement will take place Friday

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Phoenicia library fire damage

Phoenicia videographer Nathaniel Armstrong shot video about the aftermath of a fire at the Phoenicia library that took place early Saturday, a fire that destroyed the contents of the building, according to the president of the library’s board.

“The exterior is still standing, but everything inside is a total loss,” Judith Singer told the Freeman.

While sentiments of sympathy are pouring in to the Facebook page about Phoenicia, the library's book sale is continuing as planned, reports the Woodland Valley View.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

POLL: Tell us what you think about 'The Latest'

After receiving several comments regarding our new pop-under feature, we would like to get a better idea of what you think. The feature appear once per visit and open in a new window beneath our webpage.

The window is designed to deliver recommended links based on the individual reader's history and also highlights the most recent videos produced by The Freeman staff.

Should we keep or do away with that? Tell us what you think by filling out the form below. Your submissions will not be visible to the public.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Tools and resources for journalists: links from JRC Chat

As you know members of the Journal Register Company Idealab, editors, digital ninjas and anyone interested hold a weekly Twitter, now on Wednesdays at noon.

I was asked to compile the useful links from the chat that all journalists could use. And I stupidly agreed.

So here they are. Enjoy.

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JRC Chat at noon discusses being first, but being right

Members of the Journal Register Company Idealab, editors, digital ninjas and anyone interested are once again holding another weekly Twitter chat at noon today (we've changed the time to be able to include more people).

We'll be talking about how new web tools allow us to be first in covering a story and how does that compromise or challenge our goal of being right.

The feed is posted below.  But you can also follow the chat here or here or also here. And you can also check out past chats over here.

If you want to chime in, just post a tweet with the hashtag "#jrcchat" so it can automatically appear below, or post a comment in the field at the bottom of the chat.

Bonus! If something seems hard to follow, don't hesitate to ask questions. We're a pretty nice crowd and that's the whole point of the chat.

And, yes, once again, I'm copy-pasting much of what I said last week. It's part of what I've dubbed, the Two-Click Philosophy. More on that DURING THE CHAT!

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What happened to the QR codes in the Freeman?



Late last year, I began experimenting with quick response (QR) codes in the print edition of the Daily Freeman.


I created a Likify code and placed it at the bottom of the front page. I stayed there for a month. After gathering eight 'Likes' for our Facebook page, I decided to discontinue its run, at least on the front page, as it was using too much coveted 'real estate,' as we say in the biz (because, apparently, we want to be Realtors or something).

That was strike one for the code. I believe that if it was placed somewhere more permanently - like a flier or at distribution boxes around town, it couldn't hurt to have them (since it doesn't cost anything to maintain them, so there's no loss).

What worked against it was the fact that, most likely, you had to download a QR reader and then scan the thing to be send to a page to click the like button and then have to login to your Facebook account on your phone's browser, which probably looks like crap, because it doesn't work with Facebook apps. So instead of making it easier, it seemed to make it even more complicated for early users. My hat's off to those eight we went through it.

If you want to go through this yourself, here's a quick way of doing this.

Read more »

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Friday, March 11, 2011

March 11, 2011 Honshu tsunami propagation


Propagation of the March 11, 2011 Honshu tsunami was computed with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecast method using MOST model with the tsunami source inferred from DART® data. From the NOAA Center for Tsunami Research, located at NOAA PMEL in Seattle, WA.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Flood warnings map

Here's a little map with reported flooding warnings from the National Weather Service and your own reports. I'll be updating it as things progress and if places, as predicted, start flooding.


View Hudson Valley flooding, March 10, 2011 in a larger map

And here's a handy guide, courtesy of the Red Cross:

Flood Safety Checklist

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Monday, March 7, 2011

JRC Chat at noon on Tuesday tackles implementation of web tools

Members of the Journal Register Company Idealab, editors, digital ninjas and anyone interested are once again holding another weekly Twitter chat at noon on Tuesday.

We'll be talking about the implementation of digital tools into a workday, namely Google Maps, Google docs (with forms) and timelines. Once again, there will be a lot of links, or - as we say around here - ALOT!

The feed is posted below.  But you can also follow the chat here or here or also here. And you can also check out past chats over here.

If you want to chime in, just post a tweet with the hashtag "#jrcchat" so it can automatically appear below, or post a comment in the field at the bottom of the chat.

Bonus! If something seems hard to follow, don't hesitate to ask questions. We're a pretty nice crowd and that's the whole point of the chat.

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O+Festival plans another, uh, festival!

The folks at the O+ Festival have recently announced that "planning is underway for the second" O Positive Festival, set to take place in Kingston Oct. 7 to 9.
 
Art and music submissions are now open.
 
Festival organizers announce thus:
 
As O+ gets the word out—developing relationships with supporters from the West Coast to the UK, with plans to expand beyond Kingston—the team is assembling an elegant publication of photographs and essays along with a compilation CD to be released in June 2011. Keep up with news about this project and more by following O+ at facebook.com/opositivefest and twitter.com/opositivefest.
 
Learn more about the O+ Festival in a poignant five-minute documentary by filmmaker Maciek Godlewski featured on the site, at opositivefestival.org.

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Much ado about the Pike Plan

Stephen M. Finkle, Director of Economic Development for the city of Kingston, sent Freeman reporter Paul Kirby a copy of Uptown's Pike Plan.

Finkle writes:

The first section shows items to be demolished, the second shows construction.
Note that much of the structure is not being demolished- that the roofs will be replaced and skylights installed; columns will be repaired and about 20% of the columns will be eliminated to allow for more visibility behind them. You should probably look at the construction drawings after page 24 for a view of the finished product.


Pike Plan

Construction begins March 14.

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How to make a Google map with weather info without trying

So the weather has been terrible, as always and now everthing is flooded and or full of potholes. But where?

The National Weather Service provides tons of information in a format that can be imported into a Google Map.

All you have to do is this:

* Visit the National Weather Service page that has the maps and download the set you want.


Go to http://maps.google.com, click on 'My Maps' and then 'Import' and upload the file you just downloaded.


DONE! Then you just have to embed the map with your story or blog post. Chris March of the New Haven Register shows you how.


View Flooding warnings, March 7, 2011 in a larger map

You can also combine two sets of information:


View Flooding warnings in a larger map


Granted. They're not as cool as the Register Citizen's crowdsourced flooding map, but, hey, I just did this with two clicks:

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Friday, March 4, 2011

Charlie Sheen, the meme


I am ridiculously sure that I'm missing some. Feel free to add your links and I'll add them to the list.

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Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon fight (over ice cream)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Pike Plan blast from the bast

Construction begins in mid-March (whether you like it or not). Here's a refresher of what that looked like in 1976 and how the canopies in uptown Kingston have evolved (devolved?) since.

Enjoy.










Bonus! Tweet me a photo of these locations! Let's compare and contrast. I'll do a 360-degree view with Photosynth later, for a Before-During-After comparison.

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

How to develop a partnership on Twitter

The Timothy Matthews scandal - another timeline

JRC Chat at noon discusses new developments in media

As it is now becoming tradition, members of the Journal Register Company Idealab (yours included) and anyone interested are going to be holding the weekly Twitter chat at noon.

Today will be talking about new developments in media: How much can things like gamification add or take away from journalistic mission; do some new tools help improve stories or distract from them?; and more.

The feed is posted below.

As always, you are welcome to participate and chime in anytime you want.We'll have links! You don't want to miss it.

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