SUMMA is an H2020 project that contains a database of global news stories (accumulated in nine languages since August 2017), a state-of-the-art automated tagging system, and machine translation, summarization and various other data processing capacities.
The BBC newsHACK is a recurring event where various tech/media teams come together for two days to explore new technologies and compete with peers by creating app prototypes. newsHACK aims to support and accelerate tech-driven innovation in the international news industry. The November 2017 edition was dedicated to SUMMA–participants had to come up with new apps connected to the project's database.
There were three categories to compete in: "Best Editorial Tool", "Best Audience-Facing Experience", and "Surprise Us". Four media experts served as evaluators: Paul Bradshaw (course leader and founder of the MA in Data Journalism and MA in Multimedia and Mobile Journalism at Birmingham City University), Federica Cherubini (Head of Knowledge Sharing at Condé Nast International), Steve Herrmann (Editorial Director of BBC Monitoring), and Tom Wills (Data Journalism Editor at The Times and The Sunday Times).
Developer Hina Imran and Innovation Manager Olga Kisselmann took part in the competition for DW–and succesfully developed and presented "SUMMA Slackbot". The prototype app helps journalists
- monitor content recently published by their news organizations
- find media items related to a particular topic
- create visualizations for a quick overview of the available content
- provide summaries of news items
SUMMA Slack Bot secured the prize for "Best Editorial Tool" as the judges decided that it "felt like a well-defined product that could be easily integrated into journalists' workflows". They also pointed out that it was "built with team collaboration in mind".
Q-tee-am/Qatar Computing Research Institute won in the category "Best Audience-Facing Experience". They had built a bot that turns recent articles and photos from SUMMA's database into short news videoclips.
Team Factmata conquered the "Surprise Us" category with their "Fake Newsworthy?" app.
It showcases possible political bias in the news by comparing news stories from SUMMA's database with articles from left or right leaning publications.
Another newsHACK dedicated to SUMMA has been announced for 2018.
Photo: Hina Imran working on the SUMMA Slackbot code.