One Data Journalism Toolkit

A Data Journalism Expert’s Personal Toolkit by Duc Quang Nguyen.

From the post:

I was interested to review my own toolkit. Spoiler alert — this post is code-centric and will mention R a lot. This is just because I am familiar with it. I do not think everybody should necessarily use my workflow. I will not discuss much Excel, Python, Javascript, … I am well aware, however, that they are more typically used in ddj.

Before I dive into my typical workflow and tools for 2016 so far, I should mention that I work as the sole data journalist in my newsroom. It is more common in news outlets to have data/visual journalism teams, with people specialized in specific sub-areas of data-driven journalism. My workflow is pretty much data journalism on a shoe string.

Also, by ideology and because I am a nerd, I use (nearly) solely open-source free tools. Again, it is just because these are what I am more familiar with. But if there was a proprietary framework with which I can do things faster and better, I would switch in a heartbeat.

Your starting toolkit may not have all the capabilities of Nguyen’s toolkit but it is a good target to grow towards.

Start from your everyday needs and workflow and then select tools that meet those needs and workflow. Many fine tools won’t suit your present needs and there’s no shame in that. You will be far better off mastering tools that do meet your current needs.


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