Knight Lab - Storytelling Tools

Northwestern University Knight Lab is a community of designers, developers, students, and educators working on experiments designed to push journalism into new spaces. Out of this collaboration have come a suite of tools for creating highly interactive, beautiful representations of data. The suite includes JuxtaposeJS, a tool for juxtaposing changes in two images over time, SoundciteJS, in which audio can be embedded into a paragraph of text, StorymapJS, a clean, annotated map interface for storytelling, and TimelineJS, a timeline creator which beautifully integrates audio-visual data into its interactive format.

This resource and the following information was contributed to BetterEvaluation by Alice Macfarlan (BetterEvaluation and ANZSOG).

Authors and their affiliation

Northwestern University Knight Lab (a community of designers, developers, students, and educators ​working on experiments designed to push journalism into new spaces.​)

Year of release

n.d.

Type of resource

Tool

Key features

  • Free
  • For sharing online
  • A range of tools, including:
    • JuxtaposeJS, a tool for juxtaposing changes in two images over time
    • SoundciteJS, in which audio can be embedded into a paragraph of text
    • StorymapJS, a clean, annotated map interface for storytelling
    • TimelineJS, a timeline creator which beautifully integrates audio-visual data into its interactive format
  • Advice on each tool's page on how to optimise your data

Who is this resource useful for?

  • Evaluators
  • Those involved in evaluation capacity strengthening
  • Communications teams
  • People working in the media 

How have you used or intend on using this resource?

At present I'm just a viewer, not a user, however I can see myself at some point tapping into these tools for use in presentations or in a blog post.

Why would you recommend it to other people?

I like the way these tools strip away unnecessary visual clutter so that the viewer can focus on the story. The smooth navigation and interactivity of icons and embedded videos look very swish. Combined, these tools seem like a great, low effort way of upping your data visualisation game to a more professional level - indeed, each tool features examples of use in a range of well-known media outlets (e.g. Chicago Tribune report on flood damage)

Source

Knight Lab (2017) Storytelling Tools on the Knight Lab website. Retrieved from: https://knightlab.northwestern.edu/projects/#storytelling

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BetterEvaluation Knowledge Platform Manager, BetterEvaluation.
Melbourne, Australia.

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