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Tool of the week for journalists – ProPublica’s TimelineSetter

Tool of the week: ProPublica’s TimelineSetter

What is it? A tool for creating beautiful interactive timelines.

How is it of use to journalists? Having spent time developing a timeline tool, US investigative journalism news site ProPublica has made the code available for others to use, enabling journalists to build interactive timelines from a spreadsheet.

ProPublica’s timeline on how one blast affected five soldiers is a clear demonstration as to just how effective the tool can be in online storytelling.

The LA Times and Chicago Tribune are among those who have utilised the open source software since it was made public in April 2011.

TimelineSetter is not for the technology shy, however. Non-coders should not let this introduction to the tool put them off and should instead try watching the two videos embedded below and test out the technology.

Let us know at @journalismnews if you build and publish a timeline using ProPublica’s code.

If you want to create a timeline but avoid coding, try Dipity, a previous Journalism.co.uk tool of the week.

Hat tip: 10,000 Words

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