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Verification Handbook

One of journalism’s most treasured clichés, spouted by seasoned editors who ruthlessly slash other clichés from stories, is: “If your mother says she loves you, check it out.” But the cliché doesn’t tell the journalist, or humanitarian professional, how to check it out. Verification is the essence of journalism, but it also illustrates the difficulty of journalism and the need for high standards: The path to verification can vary with…

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Canadians Love Poop, Americans Love Pizza: How Emojis Fare Worldwide

The company SwiftKey analyzed more than a billion pieces of emoji data, organized by language and country. According to SwiftKey’s chief marketing officer, Joe Braidwood, the results were fascinating. Here’s a sample of what researchers found: People are mostly likely to send happy faces: “The overall thing we noticed is that 70 percent of all emojis sent are positive and so that’s probably a good thing that we’re talking to…

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How The NY Times Is Sparking the VR Journalism Revolution

Just as young people in journalism school five years ago learned that Twitter was important to reporting, soon enough they might be learning how to film with a 360-degree camera. The same goes for documentary filmmakers. “As these younger journalists are coming out of J-school they’re all learning how to use every single way of telling and reporting stories,” says Rebecca Howard, the Times’ head of video. “They are coming…

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‘Broken Age’ Review

This will be my self-reward when I finish all my obligations for the term. For the uninitiated, here’s the rundown. In Broken Age, players control two characters: Vella, a young girl who’s about to be sacrificed to an ancient monster called Mog Chothra, and Shay, a teenage boy who was raised in a spaceship by a coddling artificial intelligence called “Mom.” At first, the connection between the two characters is…

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We are cruel. We always have been. The Internet did not make us so

We didn’t start the flame war. Scandalous satirical pamphlets were once cranked out by writers and sold at train stations, like so many primordial blog posts. Political cartoons have a long and vicious history. Incivility is our legacy, not our invention. It is part, but only part, of who we are. And have always been. –Tabatha Southey, The Globe and Mail.

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Wander (1974) — a lost mainframe game is found!

Interesting news for historians of digital culture. I had no direct knowledge of this game. I want to learn more about it. Wander was probably the first computer game that is recognisable as what came to be known as a “text adventure” (or “interactive fiction“) – pre-dating even ADVENT (a.k.a. Colossal Cave) by Crowther and Woods! But Wander was more than that because it seems to have been designed to be a tool to allow users…

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Adventure | T.M. Camp

Great story of nerdiness and discovery and friendship, focusing on the author’s adult memories of his love for a particular text adventure game at a crucial phase of his youth. I’ve collected several such stories in “Interactive Fiction Reflection and Nostalgia.” He knew the game, practically had it memorized. He would be the computer. I would be the player.