When trying to determine what can be done to improve the state of journalism and media today, we realized that it can be difficult to connect stories and see the bigger picture of how current events impact society.
What it does
It used news-api to get current events, ranks them into the most important news stories, then displays other news stories who are related through semantic processing and keyword filtering. The ambition is to build a portal where users can study in-depth the geographic, and by extension cultural reach of current events and public issues.
How we built it
We split into two teams of two, one team for the front end in Angular 4 and one team for the back end in Ruby and Python. We tried to take an incremental approach, leaving work on the more complex functionality for after we finished the basics.
Challenges we ran into
Taking on more than could be done in the span of less than two days, we made a good effort to map out an efficient and balanced development cycle. However as deadlines approached we had to make hard choices about what features would have to be left for future development so that we could focus on the core functions needed for a proof of concept.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Learning a brand new API (new to us), D3, completely from scratch and implementing it into the Angular Framework in a reliable way. Topojson and Geojson concepts were a fantastic skill to gain, none of us had ever used those formats before.
What we learned
We learned that it is very difficult to project the traditional latitude and longitude measurements onto a selectively sampled map. We had to do an extensive conversion process between the different coordinate systems to accommodate for things like the earth's curvature and the different ways maps distort the globe when flattened.
What's next for geonews
We don't know, but there's still plenty of room to improve on and to grow with. We hope that our work on this project can continue in the near future!