Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Election Night Tools: Cover It Live + Mashups

Last night was an interesting prep for November. In fact, given the complexity and differences of each party's nominating process, you could argue last night was more difficult to cover than even a tight race in November. I dug around to see what new tools were in play, and came up with two interesting examples.

If you are not using Cover It Live, you are smoking crack. It's free so far, and a great way to live blog. The idea of live blogging is to cover an event as it happens, with blog entries in real-time. Many bloggers have begun doing this for major events, such as Apple keynotes. As the blogsphere audience continues to grow, so too will the audience for a live blog. Last night's election coverage was a ripe opportunity to test the idea out. Many blogs updated consistently throughout the night as results became evident, including The New York Times and The Washington Post. But only a few used this free technology.

The Cover It Live system refreshes itself as comments are made, negating the need for the constant page refresh. They also have a voting tool included as well. Very slick... I came across it last night while watching the results with the TechPresident crowd. It sure beat the experience I had with the New York Times liveblog, or even Obama's consistent blog updates...

Another cool tool was the Google + Twitter mashup. Unfortunately, I think this was cool in a geeky, tech-is-fun sort of way, and not very useful. The twitters were flying at me so fast it was difficult to understand what was going on. Maybe next time they can add a Digg-style component to the mix, to help filter and prioritize the information?

Did anyone come across other new and interesting tools?

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