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December 08 2011


PANDA Project Releases Alpha 2 (and Needs Your API Ideas!)

Last Friday, we closed out our eighth iteration of PANDA Project development and published our second alpha. We've added a login/registration system, dataset search, complex query support and a variety of other improvements. You can try out the new release now by visiting our test site here.


The PANDA project aims to make basic data analysis quick and easy for news organizations, and make data sharing simple. We've incorporated much of the feedback we got in response to the first release, though some significant features, such as support for alternative file formats, have been intentionally put off while we focus on building core functionality. We will have these in place before we release our first beta at the National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting conference in February.

As always, you can report bugs on our Github Issue tracker or email your comments to me directly.

Building a complete API

PANDA is built on a robust API so that it can be extended without modification. This is a tried-and-true way to design web applications, but it's also a permanent hedge against the project becoming bloated or obsolete. By making PANDA extensible, we encourage other developers to add features that they need, but which may not fit our vision of what belongs in the core offering -- user-facing content, for example. Ideally, this will lead to a community of expert users who sustain the project after our grant is finished.

Over the next month, I'll be adding the trickiest, but most exciting, part of the API: a mechanism for programatically adding data to the system. Once this is complete, developers will be able to write scripts which insert new data into their PANDA instance and have it immediately be made searchable for reporters. Here are some example use-cases:

This last use-case is particularly exciting. One feature we have on the roadmap is to investigate how we can integrate directly with ScraperWiki. This is speculative at the moment, but has the potential to make the API useful even to novice developers who might not be entirely comfortable writing shell scripts or cron jobs.

I'm really excited to be building out this feature. If you've got ideas for how you might use it or use-cases you want to make sure we support, let me know!

Image courtesy of Flickr user woychuk.

December 01 2011


LocalWiki Launches First Pilot, Announces Major Software Release

Hey friends! We've got two extremely exciting announcements for you. Our first focus community, serving Denton, Texas, has launched. And we're making the first major release of the new LocalWiki software today!


The LocalWiki project is an ambitious effort to create community-owned, living information repositories that will provide much-needed context behind the people, places, and events that shape our communities. We were awarded a 2010 Knight News Challenge grant to create an entirely new sort of software to make our vision of massively collaborative local media a reality.

Launching our first pilot

The DentonWiki, serving the community of Denton, Texas, has officially launched to the public. Check it out.


Denton is a small, college-focused community in North Texas, about an hour from Dallas. Being a college town, it's easy to see parallels to Davis, Calif. But it's a radically different place than Davis, as anyone who's been to the Dallas area can attest.

Folks in Denton had been building up and playing around with their project for a few months. With the new LocalWiki software at a good point, and a solid amount of interesting pages on their project, I packed up and headed out to Denton for two weeks to help them get their project ready to launch.

We held several marathon editing/hang-out sessions while there, met with lots of local Denonites, got a feel for the community, and did a bunch of work to prep the site for launch.


The Denton project has already seen a higher level of participation and usage than DavisWiki did in its early days. And we're really seeing our extreme focus on usability pay off -- I watched many non-technical people simply get handed a laptop and just immediately start creating great stuff without any guidance.

If you want to read more about DentonWiki and the launch process there, check out some information we're compiling on our guide site.

This first focus community launch -- the first of many -- is a huge milestone for the project.

LocalWiki software released

Today we are also excited to announce the first major release of the LocalWiki software! Check it out at localwiki.org. Make sure you watch the video.


Starting today, any community can create a local wiki using our new software. The software is designed to be installed by someone who's somewhat technical -- someone who's had some experience working with Linux, for instance. We worked hard to make the software as easy to install as possible.

Most people will simply use the software -- not install it, though. We're hoping that over the coming months many technically-savvy community champions will set up LocalWiki for their communities. The localwiki.org site is currently focused on targeting these sort of technically minded folks.

There's a list of communities currently running LocalWiki here (and a map here). We'll let you know as more come online, develop and launch!

There's so much more we have planned for the LocalWiki software -- but this day marks a significant step toward realizing the dream of collaborative, community-run media in every local community.

Philip & Mike

A version of this post first appeared on the LocalWiki blog.

October 14 2010


February 13 2010


Nexus One Phone Release Date

Alright consumers get ready to buy Googleâ??s nexus One phone. The word is out that you can buy Google phone directly from Googleâ??s store or through a carrier of your choice. Google is in process to add more carriers to provide service on Nexus One phone. Some of the carriers will start giving services by 2010 end. T-Mobile will start selling online services to users right away and Vodafone and Verizon will start giving service by mid 2010. The current <strong>Nexus One phone release </strong>is through Google operated web stores only.

 Google clearly is trying ti beat apple corporation in his core competence. Like Apple beat Sony in MP3 player category same Google is trying to do with Apple. Google is coming out with cool features such as voice enabled keyboard and cool widgets to access YouTube videos. The idea is to provide new experience to users to access web enabled application and give social networking a new meaning.

 The current sales pitch only through Google web stores are to create more hype abut the phone as phones are not available in market. Also it gives added advantage to Google to streamline their production release and same time they can structure their release step by step. Getting in to agreement with different carriers in world and providing services in well released manner.

 It will be interested to see how iPhone consumers will react to new features of Nexus One Phone. Clearly the cool features of Nexus One have created ripples in iPhone community. No body accepted to break current monopoly of iPhone in smart phone so easily. If Googleâ??s nexus One phone lives up to the expectation of smart phone community and there is freedom to choose carriers and economical monthly plan then this is knockout punch to iPhone.


Read fulll article, please visit … Nexus One Camera
Consultant – interest in many fields.

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