Instant innovation. Voilà.

This week, McClatchy’s Howard Weaver linked to my suggestion for the infrastructure project, mobilizing the public to gather information about crumbling public assets and sharing them on a map or wiki. The online editor of the Merced Sun-Star (newsroom staff: 25) saw it and two hours later, voilàla, the paper added a Platial/Google map to a regular feature in which readers tell the paper about problems in town and the paper reports on what’s happening and who’s responsible. Next week, they’ll tell the readers about their opportunity to use the map to share what they know.

Note that innovation didn’t take a lot of time or a big staff or any geeks writing complex programs to complex specs. Somebody saw an idea and used available tools to just do it and then the paper will add what it can: promotion and reporting. Voilà.

  • Duneview

    My browser doesn’t spell check French either, but unless this post is referencing orchestral stringed instruments I think “voila!” is what you’re looking for.

    More importantly, this was a great idea and thanks for prodding me to think more about how we (formerly known as the audience/consumers) can participate more directly with media.

  • http://www.buzzmachine.com Jeff Jarvis

    Yeah, I was being spell-check-stupid. Without thinking, when it dinged me for voila — which, honest, is what I typed first — I hit the control-click and put in the musical instrument. This time it’s right, with accent, even. Thanks.

  • http://ronmwangaguhunga.blogspot.com Ron Mwangaguhunga

    The infrastructure project is the best idea I’ve heard all week.

  • http://www.brainreactions.com Julia at BrainReactions

    Congratulations on the good idea, and an implementation success. I think the service will definitely be helpful!

  • http://platial.com deisnor

    Thanks so much Jeff! We’re honored. We’ll give some extra support to them where we can!

  • http://deleted Tansley – addendum

    Hm. VERY cool. I’m reminded of Buckminster Fuller’s “I seem to be a verb,” quote, for some odd reason… and then there’s the interesting ‘He McGuyvered a fix,’ descriptive…

    Perhaps the inception of such innovations on blogs might one day be called ‘Javising…?’

  • ronp

    great idea. should be cross referenced against tax reciepts and surplus/deficit within the state treasury. also might be fun to track congressional priorities as well. would give context to the knee jerk raise taxes/don’t raise taxes argument.