Author: tanssizhang

I am data journalism project assistant in Hong Kong Baptist University.

Data Visualization Tools We learnt on 3rd Day of Jeff’s Workshop

  • Merits:
  1. A fast tool to make an eye-tracking chart, used in American news organizations;
  2. Free themes to choose;
  3. Good color palette;
  4. Interactive charts;
  5. Add title, subtitle, body text and etc.
  • Shortcoming:
  1. Could not adjust size of callout and numbers along the axis;
  2. The callout would not show if the portion of the pie chart is so small;
  3. The map’s color is distributed randomly, not in a pattern.

It is a very good tool with fancy communications between users and the software. You could publish your story online with this tool.


It is a very good tool to tell stories with maps and media.


How much do you know about nuclear power in China?


Participated in the data-driven news competition in China, we constructed a font-end page using HTML5, CSS3 and javascript: 新能源:核电知识知多少?

We built the page with tiny basic knowledge of “the Big 3” in 5 days, including one day learning from Zhou Yongkang’s case by Caixin.

I would not say it is a news story though “nuclear” is currently a very hot topic around the world, because it is rather a pile of skills/process of fresh learners of “the Big 3” language.

Continue reading “How much do you know about nuclear power in China?”

Play with Data – Inspired by Jeff’s Workshop – Day 2

During Jeff’s workshop, we played with a lot of data sets and were armed with Excel skills. For me, after constructing the Excel tutorial and did a review of Excel, the knowledge would be as solid as possible.

       1st data set is from world bank: life expectancy at birth.

         Just remember that every time you play with a data set, just make a copy it, and keep the original in case that you mess up with the data.

Continue reading “Play with Data – Inspired by Jeff’s Workshop – Day 2”

Excel Tool Bar Mind Map

Data Visualisation

  1. Read Scott Murray’s book on developing interactive visualizations for the web:  Interactive Data Visualization
  2. Check out Propublica’s Nerd Blog: Design Principles for News Apps & Graphics
  3. Check visualization software tools compiled by visualizating data


Recommended books for journalists who would like to do data journalism:

  1. Scraping for Journalists by Paul Bradshaw
  2. Data Journalism Heist by Paul Bradshaw

Open Data Resources:

  1. CKAN
  2. Open Knowledge Foundation
  3. Open Data Institute
  4. Knight Foundation
  5. Sunlight Foundation
  6. U.S. government’s open data portal: Contains about 85,000 searchable data sets.

Tools recommended:

  1. Quandl
  2. Raw


This is a book that I have been reading recently, which is strongly recommended by some pioneers in data journalism. I would like to mark down some extracts for reference. The extracts would be in Chinese. For English version, please visit Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think. Continue reading ““BIG DATA”, A REVOLUTION, TRANSFORM HOW WE LIVE, WORK AND THINK”

Data & News Society 2nd Colloquium: Why Data Journalism?

For this month, we have the founding Principle Coordinator of Data & News Society, Dr. Roselyn Du to conduct the talk on “Why data journalism”. A lot of journalism students and professors from various fields came to the talk. Continue reading “Data & News Society 2nd Colloquium: Why Data Journalism?”


I am sorry that this article has to been written in Chinese because it’s kind of review of a conference about new media operation in China.

      这次活动请来了四位嘉宾:1. 萧秋水老师; 2. 腾讯石铭;3. 公众微信号骨灰级玩家+管理者杨坤龙;4. 微信公众号粉丝10万+持有人达达令



     秋水老师开篇告诉我们,她是来提问题的,不是来解答问题的。并直接抛出能够让我们认识自我,思考“我是谁”的七个问题:1. 你算什么?2. 你是什么?3. 你懂什么?4. 你能什么?5. 你会什么?6. 你有什么?7.你凭什么? Continue reading “腾讯大讲堂:新媒体运营”

“Big Data” Tells You the Air Pollution in Beijing – Version 1.0

Thanks to “Jackathon #8 Make an infographic in 4 hours”  held by Intium Lab. I made some data visualisations of Air Quality in Beijing from the Year 2008 to 2015.

What is the data source and how big the data is?

The original data set includes 8 separate spreadsheets, each of which represents one year and contains about 10,000 lines of records. So after combining and cleaning the data, the total Excel file contains 121127 rows. However, the truth is, if we don’t do some cleaning, the data would be much larger. Continue reading ““Big Data” Tells You the Air Pollution in Beijing – Version 1.0″