Society of Professional Journalists attendees viewed the latest and greatest digital and mobile apps to help journalists work smarter and better during “Mobile and Digital Tools for Your Newsroom and Classroom,” with panelists Mike Reilley, a data and digital journalism professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Victor Hernandez, executive editor of Crosscut.
Reilley presented his famous website, the Journalist’s Toolbox, for attendees to use as a resource. The website has thousands of tools and resources, organized by topics and beats. It also has 35 training videos for newcomers to learn about these various tools, along with access to a twice-monthly free newsletter.
Hernandez showed off the Camo app. Camo uses your mobile camera to become the master camera on virtual applications such as Zoom. It has a free and paid version that allows a laptop to have a higher quality webcam without having to buy anything new.
Reilley presented a photo app called Tinrocket, which allows users to layer text over a photo. Another tool he showed was VideoScribe, that allows users to build short animation videos on their computers as an efficient way to simplify a complex topic.
Another digital tool Hernandez demonstrated to attendees was the Grain app. Grain allows users to create a transcript of a virtual meeting, class or interview. It also converts the transcripts easily into specific clips and allows users to annotate different things, such as virtual meetings progress.
Finally, Reilley covered the Glide tool. It has free and paid versions that allow you to build mobile web apps only using a spreadsheet. You can do various presentations with this tool. For example, you can post COVID-19 testing locations or safe zones during wildfires. You have the option to create your spreadsheet as a map, listicles, cards or calendars.
You can see all the tools covered in the presentation in the video, below.