The Drake School of Journalism and Mass Communication is part of the Google News Lab University Network. As a part of that program, Mike Reilley visited campus on Feb. 3 to teach us some about Google Tools.

Reilley does trainings with the SPJ/Google News Lab training program. He’s a former journalist with the Chicago Tribune and currently teaches at Notre Dame. He also runs the website Journalist’s Toolbox.

His presentation mainly focused on tools from Google, but he also touched on some other tools of interest to digital journalists.

Digital journalism tools

Here’s a collection of the tools he introduced to us:

See what’s currently trending on Google search or see the search history for any term using Google Trends.

Translate any content or website using Google Translate. There’s also a mobile app.

Learn to verify questionable digital content by reading the Verification Handbook.

Find out how fast your website loads on desktop and mobile using Think with Google.

Site too big? Resize images using Sprout Social’s tool Landscape.

Create an interactive map from a spreadsheet of information using Google My Maps.
Here’s one I made during the training:

Make sure your embeds are mobile-friendly using the website Embed Responsibly.

Want to learn to scrape data and put it into a spreadsheet? Here’s a quick tutorial.

Turn any document into a searchable document using Document Cloud.

Interested in data? Check out Derek Eder’s website.

Google Public Data Explorer has data available to make quick visualizations. Here’s one I made during the training:

Google Earth Pro is now free for everyone! Here’s a flyover showing a couple Big Ten football stadiums that I made during training (converted to a GIF):

Here’s how to use Google Earth Pro:


Google Earth Engine lets you can build a timelapse using satellite images.

JuxtaposeJS puts a slider control on images to show before and after images. See a couple examples on this Chicago Tribune story.


Interested in more tools like this? Check out the Journalist’s Toolbox and the Google News Lab. Also subscribe to my email newsletter on what’s new in digital and social media.