Knight Blog

The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Philly project puts youth at center of software design

Nov. 29, 2012, 8:37 a.m., Posted by Donna Frisby-Greenwood


Philadelphia has a growing software development community. Unfortunately, the blacks and Latinos who make up 50 percent of city’s population have very little stake in it. 

So recently, Youngjin Yoo, a professor at Temple University working on an Urban Apps and Maps Studio, approached Knight Foundation with an idea: to use the studio as a place where digitally-native youth from underserved communities - themselves heavy tech and media consumers - can work alongside developers, business people, and designers and create apps that address urban issues.

The result is new Knight funding that will bring 300 high school and college age youth to Temple over the next three summers for a six-week program. Classes will offer training in design innovation, digital mapping, digital storytelling, and applications development. About a dozen will then become year-round community fellows working with the university to create apps that solve urban challenges. 

Putting these young Philadelphians at the center of the design process we hope will help ensure that the apps reflect the needs of the communities they seek to serve. 

Knight Center offers second massive online infographics course

Nov. 28, 2012, 9:23 a.m., Posted by Rosental C. Alves

After the popularity of its first "massive online open course" or MOOC, the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas is accepting registrants for a second run of the same course, "Introduction to Infographics and Data Visualization" with Alberto Cairo. The course, which is free and open to anyone anywhere in the world with an Internet connection, will be offered in January and February of 2013.

More than 2,000 people from 109 countries are currently participating in the first journalism MOOC, which runs through Dec. 8.  Already,  more than 2,000 people from dozens of countries around the world have signed up for the second course, including nearly 1,000 during an advance-registration period to give preference to those who tried to enter the fist MOOC and were not able to because of technical limitations. Server capacity has been increased for the second course.

Cairo, an expert in infographics and data visualization who teaches at the University of Miami. Chapters of his new book, The Functional Art are used in the course. He also uses his Twitter account @AlbertoCairo to complement class discussions. Read more about Cairo and the course here.


TEDxWomen: the role of women as powerful agents of change

Nov. 27, 2012, 7:19 a.m., Posted by Knight Foundation from Knight Foundation on Vimeo.

What innovative solutions do women offer to today’s global challenges? The conversation continues this week at the third annual TEDxWomen.

Hosted in Washington, D.C. by the Paley Center for Media, the conference is themed  The Space Between and seeks to bring awareness to and discuss the role of women as powerful change agents. In six, 90-minute sessions, speakers and performers will explore the different ways women and men approach subjects or obstacles.

— By Jeff Coates, Knight Staff