How the WSJ creates mobile-friendly interactives
Ciobanu writes, “According to Bentley, building such interactives sometimes requires ‘slotting together bigger parts and then just smoothing it all together to make it do want you want it to do’, but he still had to make some adjustments to the code in order to make sure it displayed the correct information.
“Maps are often the more obvious or easier choice when working with large data sets in the newsroom, but they shouldn’t necessarily be a port of call for every story – at The Journal, the main question is whether or not it would work on mobile and what connections readers are able to draw between the different elements included.
“‘What we really wanted to convey with this piece is how bad pollution is across Europe and that something probably needs to be done about it, beyond making sure that car manufacturers are not cheating on their tests,’ said Bentley.
“He explained that he is ‘often hesitant to do maps’ because ‘a big, full screen map is not very mobile friendly or fun to pan around it and poke at little dots’ – for that reason, the initial prototype of the pollution tool included only the search box for readers to compare different results, before it became clear that ‘the map should really be a focus.'”
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