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Example of an embedded Google Map

In Doing Journalism on Friday, November 5, 2010 by Mindy McAdams

http://maps.yourgmap.com/v/m_1bd_Gainesville_Eats.html

The above does not work the way this says it should:

Embedding a Google Map on a WordPress.com blog.

The map above was generated by this nifty site. However, you cannot embed that kind of map on a WordPress.com blog (because it relies on a bunch of added JavaScript, which WordPress.com will not incorporate).

The map below was generated by plain old Google: “My Maps.” I did what the WordPress.com support page (link above) says to do. And it works.

Here’s another map option: UMapper (free Flash based maps).

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Link to a slideshow on a WordPress.com blog

In Assigned Work on Sunday, September 12, 2010 by Mindy McAdams

For some undisclosed reason, WordPress.com will not support embeds of Soundslides slideshows.

So you can post a screen capture from your Soundslides, like the one below. It is just a normal PNG image file. Then link that to your Soundslides.

To do so, you will first need to upload your publish_to_web folder to a Web server and get a direct URL for the index.html file there.

I made a screen capture of my Soundslides and then uploaded the image to this blog. I linked the image to the index.html file in my publish_to_web folder, which was already on the Web server. Thus if you click the image above, you’ll go to the index page of my Soundslides, where you can view the slideshow.

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Add an audio file to a WordPress.com post

In Assigned Work on Sunday, September 12, 2010 by Mindy McAdams

First you must upload the audio file to a site that will allow you to get a URL for the audio file.

Then follow the instructions at No. 1 here:  http://en.support.wordpress.com/audio/

The player appears automatically!

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Putting an image into a WordPress.com post

In Assigned Work on Sunday, September 12, 2010 by Mindy McAdams

Follow these instructions: http://en.support.wordpress.com/images/

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Camera settings and photo quality

In Equipment on Thursday, October 8, 2009 by Mindy McAdams Tagged: , , , , ,

A student was trying to set her digital camera to the highest quality. She had two different option settings to deal with.

The first setting concerned compression. It was a bit perplexing because it had choices such as “Best quality, least compression,” and “Normal quality, most compression.”

Compression for images is similar to compression for audio: More compression makes the file size smaller, but it gives you less data to work with in editing. Thus we want to get the MOST data (and the LEAST compression). In this case, “Best” is much better than “Standard.”

The second setting she confronted concerned image size, or the number of pixels (width x height) for her photos. The choices listed in her camera manual were:

  • 0.3M [640×480]
  • 1M [1024×768]
  • 2M [1600×1200]
  • 3M [2048×1536]
  • 5M [2560×1920]
  • 6M(16:9) [3312×1863]
  • 7M(3:2) [3312×2208]
  • 8M [3312×2488]

What should concern you is the width x height numerals. Your assignment page states: “a number such as 2345×1000.” The highest numbers will capture the maximum amount of data, but the files will also take up more space on your memory card. Numbers that are larger than 2345×1000 will be adequate for Web photos. Make sure the width is greater than 2345 and the height is greater than 1000. So if you look at the options above, you’ll see that the student will be safe with any of the last four options.

However — please note that (16:9) refers to the aspect ratio — and so does (3:2). These are not the most versatile choices, so I would advise against using them for these assignments. The usual aspect ratio is (4:3). To learn more about aspect ratio, read this (it’s about HDTV, but the principles are the same).

These settings are explained in the manual for YOUR camera. Each camera is different.

If you have lost your manual, it is probably available online from the manufacturer. Just Google the brand name and model number to find it.

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Students’ work online

In Assigned Work on Thursday, September 3, 2009 by Mindy McAdams Tagged: , , ,

You can see videos made by past students in this course on YouTube.

You can see Soundslides by past students by following the links.

(All the slideshows and videos by all the students were posted, so the quality varies.)

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Interviewing your friends and family

In Doing Journalism on Thursday, May 7, 2009 by Mindy McAdams Tagged: , ,

If you interview your friend, boyfriend, girlfriend, roommate, sister, brother, or other family members for a story for this class, you can expect to get a BAD GRADE.

Why? Not because your instructor is psychic and will automatically know — no. Your instructor is not psychic. But when we interview people we know, we have a whole different approach to interviewing.

When we interview complete strangers, we have a different way of asking questions. As a result, we get different kinds of answers from the person being interviewed. Those answers are usually better, sharper, more interesting — and of more value to the intended audience.

Interviewing people you know is downright lazy journalism. Don’t do it.