Raleigh non-profit earns $50,000 grant

Posted June 20, 2013

— The Raleigh Public Record, a non-profit, digital news source dedicated to coverage of government and community issues in the capital city, collected a $50,000 grant Thursday from the Knight Foundation. 

Record editor and founder Charles Duncan Pardo and his brother, Edward Duncan, will use the funds to further their work on a program that converts PDF files to structured data.

In their grant application, the Record team wrote, "This may sound boring, but it’s a problem that we at the Record have been trying to overcome for more than two years. ... We’re a small news organization; we don’t have the staff to do data entry for hundreds of pages of campaign finance information. We also don’t have the budget to hire some unfortunate college students to do it for us."

Edward Duncan's solution is called DocHive. 

The team has promised to make their finished work available via open source for other newsrooms to use.

The Knight Foundation's Prototype Fund awarded five grants of up to $50,000 to projects that use technology to improve how journalists gather, vet and report information.


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  • happymom Jun 24, 2013

    "$50,000 to convert a PDF file. Give me a break. Simply go to FILE and SAVE AS a txt file"

    And then what? How would you sort the text to put all the data into the proper fields for data analysis without doing it manually? And how would you do that on a large scale?

    It's a little more complicated than just getting a pdf into a txt format if you intend to use the data.

  • kre2 Jun 21, 2013

    $50,000 to convert a PDF file. Give me a break. Simply go to FILE and SAVE AS a txt file.

  • Cock a doodle doo Jun 20, 2013

    They do a better job of reporting stories than WRAL and the N&O seem to do anymore.