“But if there’s one thing that people like Adrian Holovaty (lead developer of Django and founder of Everyblock)
have shown us, it is that broadly speaking, content — including the
news — is just data, and if it is properly parsed and indexed it can
become something quite incredible: a kind of proto-journalism, that can be formed and shaped in dozens or even hundreds of different ways.
Doing this with all of the various elements of the news — names,
places, events, details — on a large enough basis can reveal hidden
patterns or connections that might not only improve an existing story
but lead to new and completely unexpected ones. At the moment, only the
research departments of newspapers have the tools to do this, but
opening up an API the way the New York Times has can put those tools
into anyone’s hands, allowing them to pursue projects and avenues that
newspaper reporters and researchers might never think of.”
–Matthew Ingram, writing at GigaOm on The New York Times’ API and what it makes possible.