Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Public Radio Roadtrip: A Proposal for the Knight/Mozilla Drumbeat/MoJo Challenge

I have a great project for the Knight/Mozilla Drumbeat/MoJo challenge. It's geared specifically for curating, sharing and discovering media (and could also be geared for user generated media). At it's core, it's GPL licensed (both the web app framework as well as the code itself). To my knowledge, it doesn't use any proprietary technology (mostly python and javascript). It aims to promote good coding (and has the potential to be a great example of html5 coding). It's reproducable (on practically any operating system, or via Google App Engine). It's easily customized for media organizations. And I think there are software and processes that are being used (notably web2py and google app engine) which could be instructive for coders, media organizations to know about. And it's fun!

Okay, what is it? It's called the Public Radio Roadtrip. It incorporates location-based-audio (or other media) and mapping. It doesn't aim to be a cms. It allows media organizations to continue to use the publication tools of their choice. However, it provides an "editorial layer" between disparate web sites (or apis) and it leverages the power of geolocating stories.

I've been working on this app for almost a year now.

You can view the code here:

You can try out the demo here:

I've blogged a bit about the concepts and ideas behind the app here:

and here:

and here:

I've had significant input from practicing journalists and technologists from within public media such as Krissy Clarke at KQED, Javaun Moradi at NPR and Barrett Golding (at Hearing Voices).

I think this app has a lot of potential to grow in the coming year. I envision ways where journalists and citizens could inform the direction for the creation of this app. I envision ways where this app could be a useful tool for journalists working to define and discover ways in which location based stories are concieved and told. And I think this could be useful in promoting Mozilla's goal of openness, standards and innovation.

Thank you for your consideration.

John Tynan

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