As he explained today, when executive editor Scott Rosenberg first arrived at Grist, he searched the web in vain for an environmental equivalent to TechCrunch (or its robotic cousin, TechMeme) … in other words, a near-realtime, link/expert driven news site that provides trending news in the environmental space.  Long story short, what we lack, we build ourselves, so Grist is now in the process of creating such a news portal based on Twitter and RSS (more on that soon I am sure.)

What occurred to us at some point is that this sort of software has a very general use case for almost any news or advocacy organization covering a quickly changing topic, and so we decided to build not only a realtime news application, but the framework that would support arbitrary applications of this kind.  We’re calling that project CanopyEngine, and you can read more about it in this application to the Knight News Challenge.

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