NYT to release open-source “document viewer” for investigative journalism

To help create their fantastic piece about Hillary Clinton’s White House schedules, the NYT developed a tool to aid them in analysis of the enormous amount of information that the schedules contained.

Today at the Online News Association conference, Aron Pilhofer, editor of interactive news tech at the NYT, told a session audience that they are planning to release this tool as an open-source project!

(He said it’ll be on Amazon EC2, though I’m not sure exactly what that’ll amount to.)

Details are slim, but this seems like a pretty cool thing. Pilhofer didn’t give a timeline on this project, or on their previously-announced news API, but both are on the way.

I’m guessing it’ll be after the election. They’re probably pretty busy creating all those kick-ass visualizations.

UPDATE: Be sure to check Aron’s comment below. It will be open source, but they’ll also deploy it to EC2 for folks to use instantly.

8 thoughts on “NYT to release open-source “document viewer” for investigative journalism

  1. Hey Brian,

    I didn’t really do such a great job explaining the EC2 thing. We’re going to release the source code as a standalone application in Rails open source. We’re also going to release it as a preonfigured public image on EC2. So, users who want to use it but don’t want to have to go through the pain of deploying the app can just spin up an instance of the public AMI and start using it right away. That’s the plan right now, anyway. This is still very much a work in progress.

    As timing, yeah, it’s probably that’s happening sometime after the election.

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