Visual news? Yes, please. One NH company, quietly working to find meaning and common ground in scattered news sources for years, has begun to show up on the internet radar as a handy resource for visualizing the news.
One of the reasons things like The Daily Show and The Colbert Report resonate with viewers is the way the two shows find connections across news stories and help us see them too. Now imagine a company doing that across the entire web (but without the satire). That’s News Patterns.
If you are a data junkie, this service could be your new Mecca. It isn’t offered for free, though they do make some of their more popular intelligence gathering and thread finding topics available on the site in a preview. If you want to make custom topics (and I promise you will) you are going to have to go to a paid plan.
That said – if you are a tech blogger, a voter following the 2012 election, a government policy wonk, or in another career that would be a fit with their free topic sneak peeks – it’s worth noting they don’t chintz on the information.
Trends, macros, news maps, leaderboards, cross sharing sites, connectivity, more – if the thought of seeing your news a new way appeals, I highly recommend checking out their free on-site links for their most popular news searches and taking a look at the data provided. Much more comprehensive that a simple RSS feed.
For subscribers, an email containing a news briefing (how Presidential) arrives daily, complete with charts and other visual elements to flesh out all that data in the report. The email delivery may make you think of Google Alerts, but this is a much more comprehensive keyword and topic search than Google Alerts could ever be. This program is your news on steroids.