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on 24 February 2013
I bought this book because I'm interested in working with open data sets and wanted to learn more. On that basis, the book delivered: it gives a good overview, provides background context to this new and interesting field and shares tools and techniques that the author uses to manipulate and display data sets.

If you like what the Guardian produces on its Data Blog then you'll like this book. The author shares how the Guardian Data Blog source their data and turn it into brilliant information graphics.
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on 20 February 2013
A pet hate of mine is garbage presented as fact. You can see it happen all of the time on TV and in print media. Just as bad, is meaningless facts that are turned in to news.

This book helps put things right. Understand what the raw data is, where it comes from, how to get to it, understand how to interpret it and how present it properley and instead of useless data you have vital information. This book looks at "big data" and the ways that mining it can create stories.

I think it is aimed at journos rather than the ley public. That said, it is easy to understand and will help inform your view of the news. I would recommend it to anyone that has to interpret data and present results.
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on 6 January 2013
A nice bite size book on data visualization. Plenty of links and software to chase to create my own, now I need topics!
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on 5 October 2012
The book is a short introduction to data journalism. It contains several articles that don't flow together to well. You can read the whole thing in several hours. However it does come at a great price. Most of content is discussion of data stories that appeared in the guardian; wikileaks, mps expenses and the England riots. I imagine most of this could be found for free online, especially on the excellent guardian data blog website.
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on 16 September 2012
This short Guardian UK book discusses the relatively recent increase in the availablity of data and the way that reporters (and the public) can analyse it to find information of public importance hidden in the numbers. Examples are mainly from the Wiki Leaks data and the data released by various governments. Useful sources are listed, including the Guardian's own data site. Memorable facts emerge, such as that pointing out that the richest 1% of the US population own one third of US net worth.
This is a useful source book, and a comforting rejoinder to the Flat Earth News: An Award-winning Reporter Exposes Falsehood, Distortion and Propaganda in the Global Media by the Guardian's Nick Davies, which seemed to predict the death of investigative journalism.
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on 31 July 2012
A fascinatig insight into this side of data-crunching journalism.
To be honest, I'd barely even thought about data journalism and would never have picked up the book in a shop. However, bored abroad with my Kindle and a measly £2 price-tag I jumped right in.
I'm glad I did. It really made me think about the amount of effort that goes on behind the scenes on some of the biggest news stories. Without this form of data journalism we wouldn't be able to hate MPs quite so legitimately nor realise the true extent of some of the worst intricacies of the Iraq war.
Anything that promotes accountability from those up high is a great thing to my mind.
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on 29 July 2012
Apologies that this is not a review, but rather feedback for Amazon and the publisher. Would it be difficult to release this in the US?

Demand is building,

Thanks for thinking about it.

LW

(must rank before posting...so I gave 5 stars. Cant rate the work poorly as I cant read it! )
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on 11 January 2012
Simon Rogers, one of the team behind the extremely popular Datablog from the Guardian newspaper, has written a fantastic book that gives you a tour around the world of data journalism. As he says in the book, it's not new - but it is a lot more easily accessible. It's the book that has to be in the bag of any journalist - not just aspiring ones. Data is there fore everyone to see, use and exploit. At the end of the day, news is still story form - but this book will show you how to get the stories from the data, and how to present it in a way that makes the most of what you have.
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on 10 January 2012
This book should be on the reading list of any modern journalism course and the bookshelf of any modern journalist. As Rogers remarks, data journalism is not just about stats and visualisations, it's about telling a story in the best possible way. Facts are Sacred is highly detailed without having to lean on confusing terminology, and was a thoroughly enjoyable read, providing me with understanding and enjoyment in equal parts. Even if the concept of data journalism is new to you, I can't think of any better way to whet your appetite than by immersing yourself in this book.
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on 27 December 2011
Excellent guide to data journalism from the Guardian's award winning data editor. Clear, concise and immensely informative-a welcome addition to my kindle library.
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