Buzzfeed Open Lab

Wired has reported that Buzzfeed are launching a new ‘lab for open-source invention’.

‘Headquartered in the company’s new San Francisco bureau, The Open Lab for Journalism Technology and the Arts will be dedicated to coming up with new tools and technology that will benefit reporting and journalism—and releasing them as open source’.

In the interview with Wired, Buzzfeed founder and CEO Jonah Peretti talks of the benefits of dedicating some parts of a large organisation to experimentation and play and that sometimes not being on the lookout for immediate profit, can be a profitable business in itself.

Buzzfeed have partnered with GE and Eyebeam (a not for profit technology and arts organisation where Jonah Peretti was formally R&D director), to provide fellowships with the aim of investigating creative ideas. Mat Honan, head of News at the San Francisco News bureau, is leading the project and is pretty excited about the idea. In introducing the project in his blog post he writes about the logic of the new lab;

‘screw it, let’s fly drones. Drones with lasers. And more to the point: let’s build drones with lasers and show everyone how to make them too. We want to push the envelope. We want to get just on the edge of what’s possible, and what’s permissible. We want to break shit, and build it back better than it was before. And then we want to show you how to follow along, using the very same tech we developed. Basically, we want to teach everyone to fish. But with drones’.