Since becoming the Detroit Free Press' recruiter in 1990, my work and the journalism industry have changed in unexpected ways. The transformation is rapid. One benefit is that I now learn from and help other Gannett recruiters. NewsRecruiter.com is a hub site that helps keep everything organized. It tells you what I am up to, it links to my latest work and it is a test site for new projects. My best ideas have always come from you, so please write.
Excel is the new Word
At the end of a meeting among the top editors at the Free Press, the discussion turned to how much more of our online work has to do with databases.
We have always published information. Now, we need to publish, categorize and store information so that it can easily be retrieved by users, even in ways that we ourselves did not intend or imagine.
We do that with databases.
A Metromix entertainment site we will launch has dozens of details on thousands of venues: hours, charges, menu items, locations, style, photos -- pretty much whatever goes into a person's decision to visit.
Databases make it all searchable, If the information was just contained in the usual way -- in chunky pargraphs -- it be irretrievable in any kind of useful way. So, it is all -- even the photographs -- in the columns and rows of a database. In fact, the Metromix user interface pulls data from several different databases simultaneously.
As the meeting broke up, one editor said that databases have become much essential for what we do. The other said that the spreadsheet program Excel should be as widely known and used as Word.
Add comment (1)
Karen (May 14, 2010 3:24:53 AM)
Very interesting but I think you are probably right. The searchability feature of Excel makes it a much better tool than word for this sort of task
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