No Code Required – New Knight Lab Tool Lets Anyone Make Comparisons

The Northwestern University Knight Lab released a new tool this week as part of their Publisher’s Toolbox to help journalists show comparisons.

JuxtaposeJS is a free, open source slider for content creators to illustrate change. It’s as easy as linking to two similar media, like photos or gifs, and then copying and pasting the code into your website.

The tool was created by Alex Duner, a student fellow at the Knight Lab. Duner is a sophomore journalism student minoring in computer science.

JuxtaposeJS was Duner’s first exposure to developing an entire tool. The idea was inspired by Miranda Mulligan, the Executive Director of the Knight Lab, who wanted an easy tool to show comparisons.

It only took a few months to develop, Duner said, and the hardest part was ensuring the tool was flexible, simple and accessible enough for anyone to use in any type of scenario.

The next step for the project is to incorporate other media forms, like video, and to develop other ways of comparing images, he said.

“I’m excited to see what people do with it,” Duner said.

Below are scenes from around Chicago illustrating the difference between day and night. Move the slider left and right to see the differences.

They were created in minutes without having to write a line of code. The hardest part was cropping the images to make them align.