curiouscity

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Archival photos of Chicago’s long-closed Uptown Theater, courtesy of the Theatre Historical Society of America.

We asked you to help imagine a second life for the theater, and you responded with dozens of ideas. Thanks for that! And do head over here to see our recent story on restoration ideas for the theater, all inspired by a question from a local architecture student. 

vimeo

Talk about the end of the line: what’s the history behind Chicago’s “L” funeral train cars, and which cemeteries did they go to?

CURIOUS CITY SWEEPS: Curious City investigates the world of street-sweeping

Here’s what Curious City’s been up to lately: Let’s just say we’re lookin’ for a “clean sweep” when it comes to answering a question from Dan Costalis. 

The Question:

What’s the deal with street cleaning? Does it actually do anything?

More about Dan:  

He’s a web developer who lives in West Lakeview. He actually doesn’t have a car, but his girlfriend (pictured with him) does, and he says she’s constantly stressed out about getting tickets during street-sweeping. Dan also has a buddy that he says got a ticket because the city put signs up after he’d parked his car. That got him thinking: How the heck does this all work? Is this just a revenue generator, or are those streets actually getting squeaky clean?

Enter ‘The Reporter’:

General Assignment reporter Lauren Chooljian is using the quotation marks here because they look kinda legit – which hopefully cancels out the total geek vibe emanating from the pledge drive selfie above. Anyway, she’s reported on transportation for Curious City before, so she and Dan are the perfect match for this investigation. Somehow, her Curious City stories always end up being truck-related, but she sees that as more of a blessing than a curse. Lauren has a car in the city - a beloved '99 Toyota Corolla that used to belong to her grandmother (Thanks, Nunny!), so she’s also conscious of the street-sweeping schedule.

Stick with WBEZ on tumblr and on the air to see what Lauren and Dan find out! You can find more about Curious City on Facebook and Twitter, or on their homepage.

WBEZ Curious City modernizes the journalistic mission

I was blown away this afternoon by Curious City and its 100% citizen-driven reporting. Readers ask questions, then vote on which ones are the most interesting, and then go with the reporters to get them answered. What a beautiful way to honor the intelligence and curiosity of a community, to do meaningful and long-lasting work, to improve the public’s understanding of the role of journalism, and to engage — in an absolutely genuine way — at all times.

- Tony Gonzalez

Tabs #3

This weekend I had the opportunity to attend the Power of Narrative conference, curated by my former professor, Mark Kramer. It was a whirlwind of truly inspiring speakers - journalists for whom telling stories is what makes life interesting and beautiful and important. The indecisiveness in me hated that there were multiple speakers presenting at once - like those Choose Your Own Adventure books I never liked; I wanted to know about every possibility - but the sessions I was able to hear were so significant.

I failed to post last week due to a computer mishap, but I’ve been collecting a whole new slew of tabs about what I heard this weekend. This edition is not necessarily timely, i.e. things that were posted or published within this week, but it is relevant to the point of bookmarking things I don’t ever want to lose. And a way to remedy how my head has been buzzing with all the inspiration.

+David Carr gave a keynote with Ta-Nehisi Coates about how storytelling evolves along with technology. Scribbled frantically in my notebook:

“Everyone knows what you mean when you say man, that was a good story. The writer went places, created an immersive experience, found people more interesting than them”

“People consume narratives on their phones; it’s hard to finish something on a computer or tablet because they do too many things”

“Twitter has something to do with headlines but nothing to do with narrative”

“Great stories happen in a room filled with fear and insecurities”

Plus shout outs to Medium (which he will be using for his upcoming students at BU), This American Life, and Lucky Peach for retaining an artisanal approach.

+ A debate between the needs of art and the needs on truth with Josh Neufeld re: journalism through comics

+ Amy O'Leary on using multimedia designed to make the reader curious, and how to promote a story by getting it out into the ecosystem in which it lives. She also showed us a multimedia failure in which the interface was too confusing to navigate, saying “I thought I knew better than the reader what they needed; I was in love with my own ideas.”

+ Jennifer Brandel spoke about Curious City, through which the public can be involved in every stage of the story. This website is so creative, from how they choose ideas to explore through their incredibly compelling interactives. In one example, she explained how her radio station commissioned a science illustrator to create art for this webpage, laughing both in the amazement and slight ridiculousness of the way our world now works.

+ Kat Chow sees the beauty of journalism in how you can play around and see what works with the readers through social media. The ticker that starts as soon as you open this story is a powerful tool to engage anyone who otherwise might not have been compelled to click through. (The photo above is also from this story.)

+ Dan Barry spoke about his story The Boys in the Bunkhouse, showing examples of different ledes and where exactly he slashed words, saying “In the tightening comes some purity.”

+ Adam Hochschild spoke about memoir with Barry and Carr, warning that “Everything in our lives interests us. It’s a big mistake to think others will also be interested.”

There were too many great speakers, too many possible links. Scroll through #narrativeBU for more.

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Chicago’s Beverly neighborhood is known as one of the city’s most integrated communities - but it wasn’t always that way. Beverly resident Erin McDuffie asked how her neighborhood maintained racial integration while most other South Side communities experienced white flight.

WBEZ reporter Natalie Moore and our question-asker head to Beverly’s Ridge Historical Society to see some of the original documents used to help convince the entire neighborhood that integration is intevitable - and how to respond. Full story: http://wbez.is/1flp3mk

Pretty sure this is the nest of a wild parrot in Nichols Park on the South Side…now where are the parrots? #curiouscity

Dagens spaningar 15-17 maj 2015

RT @DianeRavitch: Vietnam Wallops U.S. on PISA, But Vietnamese Educators Belittle Value of PISA http://t.co/3BWQVdgBkG

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 17, 2015

MT @curiousc: We are ignoring the new machine age at our peril, writes @jjn1 in @guardian http://t.co/2RNCkHxx6F

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 17, 2015

.@TobiasFredberg i GP: Digitaliseringen innebär att företag måste se sig som samhällsmedborgare http://t.co/sGUCPAC1mf

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 17, 2015

.@thingelingela om timplan hit och timplan dit http://t.co/b47LnnbCFS #samhälle #skolan #undervisning

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

Skolan borde närma sig frågor om it-säkerhet utifrån ett barnperspektiv, bloggar @jacobmollstam http://t.co/4SiXPtndhI

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

RT @JoKristensson: Logopeden i skolan: Webbforum samlar appar för kommunikation, struktur, minne och tid http://t.co/xnAI9ljL51 #funkpol

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

RT @berlingske: Gentofte har succes med at lære treårige engelsk http://t.co/Ru5NvgeXYV #förskolan

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

MT @Tekniskamuseet: I @SvD idag om vår största satsning någonsin för alla nyfikna: Megamind http://t.co/0Ud1wRShoL #makerkultur

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

Det är för mycket som är särskilt, bloggar @jerhov http://t.co/gbN4cI8BjU #skolan #undervisning

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

MT @avadeaux: Svensk valhemlighet ifrågasatt av EU-kommissionen. Har detta synts i svenska media? Politiken: http://t.co/uPeoeAVUUJ

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

RT @AWilliamsson: Snubblade över detta underbara samtal mellan Bengt Göransson och Alice Bah Kuhnke: http://t.co/RAZQbZNbqO

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 16, 2015

MT @Anna_Kaya: Tidigare idag tyckte jag ni skulle följa @nicklas80. Läs hans granskande inlägg om lärstilar http://t.co/xPYpxLf107

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

MT @lars_berge: …i väntan på zombiearbetslinjen. Arbetslinjen 1922–2015 http://t.co/6h17o3Pzsc via @SvD #arbpol #samhälle

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

RT @Skoloverstyrels: OECD och PISA – en guldgruva för skolpolitiker http://t.co/qRw9kJOCGc #skolan #utbpol

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

Det handlar om att göra nytta i samhället, säger @peterparnes, fredagsgäst hos @p4norrbotten http://t.co/AviIJBTwwL

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

IDG: Det hjälper inte att blockera piratsajter säger forskare i ny EU-rapport http://t.co/dztH6Vy8Gu

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

Nytt på Omvärldsbloggen: Datalogiskt tänkande och digitalt skapande http://t.co/GJdjAgxWwu #itiskolan #makerkultur

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

Kolla källans idélåda: Lärare bloggar om #källkritik http://t.co/l92jG9FdQp

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

Skolverket: Språkundervisning i en digital tid http://t.co/TuMh6U4Xeq #itiskolan

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

RT @Under_strecket: “När Stenbeck trädde in i Maos ställe”. Torbjörn Elensky om flykten från vänster till höger http://t.co/fWq8sXmEhE

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015

RT @TheNextWeb: Google expands the information it discloses in its Transparency Reports http://t.co/0ZOWwgsbmM by @jackidove

— Stefan Pålsson (@stefan_palsson)

May 15, 2015