Journalists have tools at their disposal and allot of them are great fun!

Three examples to take notice of is Google public Data explorer, Hex: codes of crayon colors and BBC: How big really? Dimension.

-Google public data explorer makes large data-sets easy to explore, visualize and communicate. It creates charts and maps animate over time. You can see the changes in the world and it becomes easier to understand.

-Hex Codes of crayon colors are great for picking unique Photoshop colors.

-BBC: How big really? Dimensions. This gives spacial context for events by presenting them against the background of a place i.e. a city, or a zip code.

Examples of potential news stories using these tools in your city could be identifying all the major and minor sports stadiums i.e. hockey arenas. Research and analyze. Color code the total population of incoming guests (fans) in 1 year, 5 years, and 10 years. Then do a comparison to the different medium of sports genre i.e. basketball and football.  Or journalists can color code the traffic conditions to that particular stadium.  This is useful for planning a trip to the stadium, to identify traffic congestion over specific time periods.

Local companies are multi-dimensional and these investigative and reporting tools can assist your readers visually.

For example Switch is a local Las Vegas company:

“Switch is the creator of The SuperNAPs, which house the world’s most advanced technology ecosystems serving over 500 clients from passionate start-ups to Fortune 1000 enterprises.

Cloud - the Switch Cloud City with Trace3, Nirvanix, Joyent Cloud, Bluelock, Hitachi, Xerox, Cloud Foundry, Zumasys, Box, Profit Bricks, Cloudsigma, HP Cloud, Secure 24.

Switch is a complete engine of technology capabilities driven toward one purpose: creating a revolutionary environment where businesses experience the world’s safest data storage, lightning-fast Internet speed, the globe’s most affordable connectivity, and 100% uninterrupted up-time.”

These journalism tools will assist you in translating IAAS, PAAS, SAAS providers into a motion picture of what connectivity means to  your reader.