Tuesday, October 11, 2016

How nonprofits can use Tableau: Chad Skelton's TechSoup webinar

Last month, I hosted a one-hour webinar in partnership with TechSoup Canada about how nonprofits can make use of Tableau (and get free licenses!).

You can watch a recording of that webinar below.

If you're a nonprofit in need of some Tableau training or consulting, you can drop me a line at cskeltondata@gmail.com

Friday, October 7, 2016

How to think like a data journalist: Chad Skelton at Information+

Credit: Information+ Conference
Back in June, I had the pleasure of speaking at Information+, an interdisciplinary conference on information design and information visualization organized by Isabel Meirelles and Katherine Gillieson.

You can watch my talk -- on "How to think like a data journalist" -- below. If you don't have time to watch the whole thing, folks on Twitter did a pretty good job of summarizing the key points.

You can check out videos of all the talks on the Information+ website.

There were so many great talks at the conference, it's hard to pick out my favourites.

But I particularly recommend you check out Tamara Munzner's keynote, Robert Kosara on pie charts, Gregor Aisch on creating graphics for The New York Times, Lena Groeger on ProPublica's "meat charts", Andy Kirk on doing data viz training, Scott Murray on designing online learning, Heather Krause on communicating data globally and Johanna Fulda on the state of data journalism in Canada.

Chad Skelton from Information+ Conference on Vimeo.

And thanks to Alberto Cairo and Heather Krause for saying nice things about the talk after I posted it on my blog.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

My next public Tableau Training workshop is Sept. 24-25, 2016

My next two-day public Tableau training workshop will be held on Saturday, Sept. 24th and Sunday, Sept. 25th at SFU Harbour Centre. You can buy tickets here or by clicking the button below:

Eventbrite - Tableau Training: Telling stories with data

Here are some testimonials from folks who attended my earlier training sessions.

If you can't make this workshop but would like to be alerted when the next one is scheduled, just add your name here.

If you have several people at your organization who need training in Tableau, I'm also available for onsite training.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Is your commute really so bad? An interactive map for BCBusiness magazine

My latest data journalism project just went live on BC Business magazine's website: An interactive map that lets you compare your commute to neighbourhoods across Metro Vancouver. You just choose your commute time from the dropdown menu at the top and the map changes colour to show you which areas have a shorter or longer commute than you. You can also hover over any neighbourhood to get more info on how people in that area get to work.

The map accompanies a feature story on commuting by my friend Frances Bula.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Video of Chad Skelton's talk at SFU on "Big Data"

Photo by Gladys We
I had the pleasure of speaking on March 22 at Simon Fraser University's Burnaby campus as part of the President's Dream Colloquium on Engaging Big Data. It was a real honour to be included in the event, which included some amazing speakers. And it was great to have a chance, after the talk, to chat with some of the students at SFU about their experience taking part in the Colloquium.

The charts above, comparing the "Scientific Method" to the "Journalistic Method", was part of my talk. Though the point I was making wasn't quite as harsh as it might first appear. I was arguing that one of the strengths of data journalism is that, practiced correctly, it can help journalists actually answer important questions, and move away from he-said/she-said reporting.

The video of my talk is now available on SFU's website, and embedded below. The talk is in two main parts. The first part, from around the 5:30 minute mark to the 21:30 minute mark, is the "big picture" part of the talk, in which I talk about why data journalism is so valuable. The second part, from 21:30 to 57:30, is the more practical part of the talk, going through some of the resources available for finding open data and visualizing it. From 57:30 on is the Q&A.

SFU President's Dream Colloquium (Chad Skelton) from The IRMACS Centre on Vimeo.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

My latest data project: Vancouver's most livable neighbourhoods

Since leaving The Vancouver Sun in September, I've been mainly keeping myself busy with a lot of non-journalism work: teaching at Kwantlen, giving talks and doing a lot of data visualization training.

But I also had the chance to dig my teeth into one really big data journalism project over the past few months and it launched this week: Vancouver Magazine's data-driven ranking of Vancouver's most livable neighbourhoods. (North Shore neighbourhoods are also included in the ranking.)

The project really put my nerd skills to the test. I had to figure out how to cobble Census Tracts together into meaningful neighbourhoods, use QGIS to map business locations to neighbourhoods and figure out how to use a "Z score" to get the whole ranking to make sense.

I also got a chance to work with a great team over at VanMag -- Tom Gierasimczuk, Max Fawcett and Trevor Melanson -- who I hope I get the chance to work with again soon.

The overall winner for most livable neighbourhood? False Creek, followed by the West End and Lynn Valley.

You can pick up Vancouver Magazine at your local newsstand and check out the full ranking online here.

These kinds of rankings are obviously subjective, as you have to make a decision about how much to weight different aspects of livability.

Which is why I'm so pleased the project launched with an interactive calculator where you can answer a few questions about what's most important to you about where you live and find the best neighbourhood just for you.

If you've got a data project -- journalism or otherwise -- you'd like me to help out on, drop me a line at cskeltondata@gmail.com.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

One spot left for my Apr. 20-21 Data Visualization and Tableau Training

There is one spot remaining for my next Data Visualization and Tableau Training session, being held on Wednesday, Apr. 20th and Thursday, Apr. 21st. If you want to attend, you can purchase a ticket here:

Eventbrite - Data Visualization and Tableau Training

Here are some testimonials from folks who attended my earlier training sessions.

If you're wondering why I'm only posting about this workshop now, it's because I try to give people on my email list a heads up about upcoming training sessions -- usually at least a week before I promote the events on Twitter and this blog.

If you'd like to get on that mailing list, just add your name here and I'll send you an email when the next training session is scheduled.

A reminder that I'm also available to do one-day and two-day onsite training if you have a group of people at your organization who you think would benefit from training in Tableau or other data visualization and analysis tools.