The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation today (Feb. 3) announced a four-year, $4.2 million grant to Northwestern University for the Knight News Innovation Laboratory. The Knight Lab will be the first of its type in the nation, a partnership between Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism and the Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern. Journalists and computer scientists will join forces to create new digital tools, build partnerships with media organizations and expand the media innovation community. Even the historic blizzard in Chicago couldn’t stop the announcement. A formal launch at the snowed-in university was scrapped for an online question-and-answer session with Eric Newton, vice president of the journalism program at Knight Foundation, and his team.