There are many free applications and online tools journalists can use to make different types of stories, from interactives and graphics to data visualizations and maps. These are links to many of the most useful and popular ones and tutorials on how to use them for effective storytelling.
Google Charts lets you generate many different types of charts using data in a Google spreadsheet to use in your storytelling.
- Google Charts – Google Developers
- How to make searchable, Web-based Google charts – Poynter
- The Data Visualisation Catalogue – Guide to when to use different types of charts
Google Forms for Interactive Quizzes
You can use Google Forms to create interactive quizzes.
- Create Forms – Google
- How to Make an Interactive Review/Quiz Using Google Forms – Katie Ann Wilson
- Embed Your Forms – Google Docs Blog
Google Maps Engine
You can use Google Maps Engine to import a spreadsheet and plot data points on a Google map.
- Google Maps Engine – Google
- Google Maps Engine Tutorial – Google Earth Outreach
- Google Maps Gallery – examples of Google maps
- Google Maps Engine – comparing lite, pro and advanced versions – Google. Scroll down and click on “Compare Google Maps Engine editions.”
- How to embed video and photo in a Google interactive map – MulinBlog. See especially the instructions on how to get a URL for a Flickr photo to embed in a map.
Google Tour Builder
Google Tour Builder lets you use satellite maps and street views from Google Earth to create a story that moves from one geographic location to another. You can display a text box and photos or a video at each point in the story.
Illustrate your data and create more than 30 chart types using Infogr.am. Anything from bubble charts and treemaps to simple pie charts.
StoryMapJS is a free tool to help you tell online stories that highlight the locations of a series of events. It was developed at the Knight Lab at Northwestern University.
Turn images into interactive graphics.
TimelineJS is an open-source tool that enables you to build visually rich interactive timelines. It was developed at the Knight Lab at Northwestern University.
About this Tutorial
This Storytelling Apps and Tools tutorial was written by Paul Grabowicz, Richard Koci Hernandez and Jeremy Rue
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