What the Coloradoan staff is learning while experimenting with bots

A planning editor with the Fort Collins Coloradoan is experimenting with bot technology and it’s taught her that it doesn’t require a team of technologists. Jennifer Hefty says it doesn’t even require HTML coding experience. Relying on research, a free bot interface and resources already in the newsroom, Hefty built and launched her first bot, dubbed Elexi, prior to the November 2016 elections to provide audiences with the necessary information to become more informed voters.

Hefty was inspired to bring the technology to her newsroom after learning more about bots at the Online News Association annual conference in September 2016. With positive feedback from the first experiment, she’s getting ready to launch her next bot experiment.

Senior Information Specialist Jennifer Nelson spoke recently with Hefty about Elexi and its use during the fall elections

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