Category Archives: Widgets/Tools/Mobile Apps

Journalism Library Data Viz Contest – Decorate Our Wall EXTENDED

Hold the phone!!!  The Journalism Library is excited to EXTEND the deadline for the data visualization contest! Submit your entries by Wednesday, May 15th 5pm, for a chance to see yours in poster-size proudly displayed in the Journalism Library. The winner will also receive a libraries mug and the opportunity to submit your work to Columbia University Libraries Academic Commons.

Contest Rules:

  • submissions must use publicly available data; data is broadly defined and can include video, audio, photo
  • submissions must be received no later than 5pm on May 15th – please send to
  • you may use previously submitted class work!
  • submissions must be in PDF – please do not include your name in the filename, but please share with us the following in your email!
    • your full name
    • graduation year
    • title for your creation
    • data source/s used

Try Ashley's new cool data tools page for help and ideas!

All submissions will be judged based on accurate use of data and originality in aesthetic presentation; panel of judges includes Journalism Librarian, Cristina Ergunay, Data Services Coordinator, Ashley Jester, and JSchool Professors Susan McGregor and Mark Hansen!

The winner will be announced at the JSchool Innovation Showcase on May 17th. We look forward to your submissions! 

New Service – Journalism Library Video Chat

The Journalism Library is excited to launch a new cool service to assist you with your research – video chat reference – which will enable you to connect with a librarian using Skype or Google+ Hangouts.

Enjoy virtual face time and screen-sharing demonstrations, all from the comfort of your couch.  In addition to video chat "Walk-in Wednesdays," you may make evening and weekend appointments for video chat research assistance.

Take a look at the instructions for using these video chat technologies – and book your appointment today!

Find Out Who’s On The Ballot

Created by professor Ester Fuchs, Who’s on the Ballot is a quick and easy to use website and mobile app that provides New York City citizens the location of polling places, information on candidates, sample ballots, and voter registration information.  Learn about candidates, find out when and where to vote. It’s as easy as entering your home address in search boxes.

NYC Apps

The City of New York has produced several apps, which are available for download on its site, Official Apps from the City of New York. Two that I have on my smartphone are ABCEats, which lists the grades and inspection reports for all NYC restaurants, provided by the Department of Health, and NYC311, an app which allows you to report problems to various city agencies, such as fallen trees, water main breaks, or street potholes. The app will use your current location or you can type in an address, as well as upload photos. Citizen participation!

Mobile Apps Gallery — from

There are now dozens of apps available from the U.S. government for your smart phone or tablet, whether Android or Apple, located on the Mobile Apps Gallery at Just a few examples:

Science360 – The National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Science360 for iPad provides easy access to engaging science and engineering images and video from around the globe and a news feed featuring breaking news from NSF-funded institutions. Content is either produced by NSF or gathered from scientists, colleges and universities, and NSF science and engineering centers.

NPS National Mall – This is the official National Park Service app for the National Mall and Memorial Parks. On your next visit to Washington, D.C., use it to explore many of the most cherished cultural and historical sites in the United States—from the Lincoln Memorial to the White House. The app includes a total of 70 sites.

National Hurricane Center – The NHC mobile app allows you to access critical hurricane advisories and marine forecasts on your cell phone.

Set in Style – Since its opening on the Place Vendôme in Paris in 1906, Van Cleef & Arpels has played a leading role in style and design innovation. Its timeless pieces have been worn by style icons including the Duchess of Windsor, Grace Kelly and Elizabeth Taylor. This exhibition will explore the historical significance of the firm’s contributions to jewelry design in the 20th century, including the establishment of Van Cleef & Arpels in New York with the advent of World War II.

This iPad application showcases 65 of the 350 works on view at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York including jewels, timepieces, fashion accessories and objects d’art by Van Cleef & Arpels, many of which were created exclusively for the American market. Use the application to browse, share with friends and connect with the exhibition, which will examine the work through the lenses of innovation, transformation, nature as inspiration, exoticism, fashion and personalities.

Smart Traveler –

Smart Traveler, the official State Department app for U.S. travelers, invites you to see the world with easy access to frequently updated official country information, travel alerts, travel warnings, maps, U.S. embassy locations, and more. With Smart Traveler, you can create personal itineraries, add notes, and organize your trips.

UN CountryStats App

The United Nations has just released a new mobile app for data.

UN CountryStats is a data visualization tool to compare key economic, social, environmental, trade, and area & population indicators for 216 countries and territories. Indicators, drawn from the United Nations' unique and authoritative data set, can be viewed as complete country tables or visualized as bar graphs. Other useful tools include detailed definitions of each indicator and the ability to save graphs as favorites.

Available now, for the iPhone and iPad. Also take a look at the other UN apps available, like the UN News Reader and Basic Facts About the United Nations.

World Development Indicators 2012

World Development Indicators 2012 is now available online. The 16th edition of World Development Indicators publication and database update contains updated data through 2010 and 2011 for many indicators. This update contains:

  • more recent data on poverty at international poverty lines for more countries, including global and regional estimates
  • measures of malnutrition disaggregated by sex
  • health indicators disaggregated by income quintile
  • data on carbon dioxide emissions by economic sector
  • data on climate variability, exposure to impact, and resilience

You can access the full range of World Bank data and publications with the Libraries' subscription to the World Bank eLibrary. And don't forget about the World Bank apps for iPhone and iPad!

Columbia Libraries Via Your Mobile Device

Exciting news!  Now you can use your mobile device for fast access to many of the libraries' resources – – including:  

  • CLIO
  • News & Events
  • Library Hours
  • Ask a Librarian
  • Facebook & Twitter

Don't leave home without this bookmark!