St Louis Arch - IRE / NICAR 2012
St. Louis, Missouri, USA

All this fuss about data journalism seems to forget the fact people have been tucked away in Computer Assisted Reporting teams for the last forty years, piecing together Pulitzer winning investigative pieces. It was nice to be asked to join a panel at the IRE's annual NICAR conference – an event that not only represents this heritage but also acts a gathering point for many of the news app teams that have been springing up around the world.

It found myself on a panel discussing how Twitter can be used as a source for social analysis. Since we launched our Riot Rumours interactive, my talks have been increasingly dominated by tigers and fluorescent microscopy. Flying balls aside, there was plenty of other stuff on the menu, not least the booking hall of St Louis central station aka the hotel bar.

St Louis Union Station

At the conference, three highlights were Matt Waite's drone journalism demo, Brian Boyer's PANDA costume and all the things people managed to fit into their two minute lightning talks. Out and about in St Louis, we sampled the lesser-known Serbian restaurant scene, visited a bar with the midwest's largest collection of canned beer and slid ten storeys at the amazing City Museum.