If you are reading this documentation it is probably because your interesting in using PANDA to manage your newsroom data. This brief introduction will introduce you to PANDA and show you how it can save you time, keep your data safe and improve the quality of your reporting. More detailed descriptions of the features of PANDA can be found in sections following the introduction.
First and foremost PANDA is a "data library", which means that it stores all the data you work with--voter registration records, police reports, water testing results, etc. When you upload your data to PANDA it is stored safely away so that it can be easily found again, either by yourself or by another reporter in your organization.
PANDA is also a search engine. By uploading your datasets to PANDA you make them searchable by everyone in your organization. This search feature is designed to work like Google, so you don't need to learn a new way of exploring the data.
When all your data is stored in PANDA it is just a quick search away. No more opening Excel and scrolling through thousands of rows to find one piece of information. PANDA is fast and it is always available. Give your data to PANDA and it will save you time on deadline.
Never worry about a crashing computer, a lost thumb drive or a scratched CD destroying your sources. Give those files to PANDA for safekeeping. PANDA works just like Google so you will always be able to find it again.
PANDA encourages serendipity in the reporting process. By having access to all the newsworthy data in your newsroom you will uncover information you might have otherwise overlooked. For instance, a search for the name of a state senator might return a dataset of his political affiliations, a record of his graduation, a list of bills he has sponsored and a brother who is an energy lobbyist.
By providing a single place to store all your newsroom's data PANDA will encourage knowledge sharing, prevent the loss of information and slow knowledge attrition when reporters retire or change jobs. Never again should more than one reporter FOIA the same dataset.
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