A way to make meaning out of big data, content and information.
"This blog post explores if and how the framework for the analysis of static graphics offered by Yuri Engelhardt in his PhD thesis, The language of graphics: A framework for the analysis of syntax and meaning in maps, charts and diagrams (2002), might be usefully extended to become applicable to dynamic and interactive graphics as well. This brief exploration will center on a discussion of one example of a dynamic graphic: Gapminder World."
Visual tools empower all design fields.
"When we speak about a service or a system, an ecosystem or concept, they are a lot of times abstract things. Visualization representation is a way to make them more tangible."
(Elizabeth Wood ~ frog design mind)
How perception of information drives our concepts and the way we think, understand and come up with ideas.
"As humans, our ability to observe and analyse the contents of the world around us is both unique and astonishing, but so too is our capacity to form verbal and visual concepts. These seem to be the principal factors which have worked to our adaptive advantage in competition with other animal species. We are, in one respect at least, superior to other animals because we have developed a greater variety of systems of communication and expression, and one of these is art."
It's all about language: morphology, phonology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics.
"Many types of information have their own vocabulary along with conventions for visual communication."
Even business graphics is on the horizon. And that's not clipart in PPTs.
"In the last ten years, the area of Information Visualization has witnessed an exponential increase in its popularity. Diagrammatic reasoning and visual epistemology are becoming readily accepted methods of research in many academic domains. Concurrently, information graphics and Infovis have grabbed the attention of a larger mainstream audience."
(Parsons Journal for Information Mapping Volume IV, Issue 4)
Visual thinking and communication, the way to tackle many wicked design problems.
"It's not just clients who are compelled by visuals. Visuals grab everyone’s attention in meaningful, memorable ways, whether we're trying to influence project managers or CMOs. Content strategists use words to argue our points, yet our colleagues (UX and Creative, and even Project Management) use visuals. We should, too. Not sure how to turn data into information?
Example of how InfoViz finds its way into Service Design.
"As the field of service design evolves so do the tools. At Adaptive Path we often find ourselves debating the form and definition of service design artifacts."
One image, a thousand words. One word, a piece of the jigsaw puzzle.
"It is all too easy to create UX deliverables that are not visually pleasing. But UX expertise encompasses Web design, graphic design, and branding, so why should we be satisfied with mediocre design in our deliverables? When we present our personas, sitemaps, user flows, wireframes, and other design deliverables to our clients and stakeholders, it is our duty and responsibility to create well-designed deliverables."
And who's Darth Vader of visualization?
"If there is a Jedi Master of presenting data clearly, visually, and simply, then it is Hans. He proves time and time again, that data are not dull-and when you are trying to change the world, there is no excuse for boring presentations."
How much information does an image contain? 1.3 Mbyte?
"Visual storytelling is nothing new. We only need to look to the earliest signs of humanity for proof-simple paintings on the walls of caves tell the story that people are a visual tribe."
Visuals are great, but what about the language it uses, spoken.
"(...) the most compelling work by a new generation of designers, illustrators, graphic editors, and data journalists tackling the grand sensemaking challenge of our time by pushing forward the evolving visual vocabulary of storytelling."
"Edward Tufte occupies a revered and solitary place in the world of graphic design. Over the last three decades, he has become a kind of oracle in the growing field of data visualization - the practice of taking the sprawling, messy universe of information that makes up the quantitative backbone of everyday life and turning it into an understandable story. His four books on the subject have sold almost two million copies, and in his crusade against euphemism and gloss, he casts a shadow over the world of graphs and charts similar to the specter of George Orwell over essay and argument." (Joshua Yaffa ~ Washington Monthly) ~ courtesy of jasonkottke
"Visual communication via diagrams, sketches, charts, photographs, video, and animation is fundamental to the process of exploring concepts and disseminating information. The most-effective visualizations capitalize on the human facility for processing visual information, thereby improving comprehension, memory, and inference. Such visualizations help analysts quickly find patterns lurking within large data sets and help audiences quickly understand complex ideas." (Maneesh Agrawala, Wilmot Li, and Floraine Berthouzoz ~ CACM)
"The topic of my Master thesis project is the development of a design pattern taxonomy for data visualization and information design. In its core, the project consists of a collection of 55 design patterns that describe the functional aspects of graphic components for the display, behavior and user interaction of complex infographics. The thesis is available in the form of a 200-page book that additionally includes a profound historical record of information design as well as an introduction into the research field of design patterns." (Christian Behrens)
"An hour-long documentary on statistics and infoviz produced by the BBC. Documentary which takes viewers on a rollercoaster ride through the wonderful world of statistics to explore the remarkable power thay have to change our understanding of the world, presented by superstar boffin Professor Hans Rosling, whose eye-opening, mind-expanding and funny online lectures have made him an international internet legend." courtesy of jasonkottke
"The explosion of information that analysts and executives must consume, as well as the increasing variety of sources from which that information comes, has boosted the popularity of information dashboards. Modeled after the dashboard of a car or airplane—which informs its operator about the status and operation of the vehicle they’re controlling at a glance—dashboard user interfaces provide a great deal of useful information to users at a glance. Typically, the role of an information dashboard is to quickly inform users and, thus, enable them to take immediate action." (Mike Hughes ~ UXmatters)
"Journalists are coping with the rising information flood by borrowing data visualization techniques from computer scientists, researchers and artists. Some newsrooms are already beginning to retool their staffs and systems to prepare for a future in which data becomes a medium. But how do we communicate with data, how can traditional narratives be fused with sophisticated, interactive information displays?" (Geoff McGee)
"The thesis provides an academic basis on the use of visualisations in service design. It is concluded that it seems like the service design community currently sees services as being not-goods, a line of thought other service disciplines have discarded the last ten years and replaced with a view of services as the basis for all transactions. The analysis highlights areas where there is a need to improve the visualisations to more accurately represent services." (Fabian Segelström)
"We are proud to present our first - prototype! - episode of The Digital Life: adventures in design and technology. The purpose of the show is to provide insight into various topics and areas of interest pertaining to the bleeding edge of the industries behind digital technology. Leveraging our years inside the most important and progressive companies in Silicon Valley, we will provide insights and an interesting and ever-changing array of special guests to entertain you while helping your brain grow bigger. Bull Session: InfoViz." (Involution Studios)
Exploring the power of knowledge visualization in problem solving - "This paper presents knowledge visualization as a design activity in problem solving. In contemporary design practice the increasing complexity of problems and range of information that design practitioners engage with is driving the need for more robust processes and tools in order to design relevant, meaningful solutions for people. We situate visualization within a four phased model where the intent is to understand the dimensions of a problem. Visualization aids in sensemaking and cognitive processing of complex information. It accomplishes this through framing ambiguous states, bringing order to complexity, making sense out of seemingly unrelated things or finding insights that are buried in data. We propose that in a problem solving context its value goes beyond the functional level of simply representing information but rather operates as a powerful instrument for thinking in analysis, synthesis and insight generation. Visual models and frameworks serve as tools to illuminate relationships and meanings within data and define the areas to explore and construct solutions." (Joanne Mendel and Jan Yeager ~ Parsons Journal for Information Mapping Volume 2 Issue 3)
"I concede that my knowledge of the US government is largely informed by the West Wing and so I don't fully understand the relationships between and alignment of the various councils, departments, panels and bodies. Furthermore, I'm unclear about the role of the department that appears responsible for delivering the spending sites – Chief Information Officer's Council nor entirely clear about the potential scope or reach of Tufte's appointment." (Andy Kirk ~ Visualising Data)
"We really enjoyed watching the World Cup over lunch here in the Cooper office. The games sparked many conversations about soccer, beloved sporting traditions, and why FIFA is so bloody minded about goal-line technology use (okay, maybe that last one was just from a bitter England fan). It's also been a time to admire the many new and unusual visualizations used for the tournament brackets, game-by-game breakdowns, and statistical replays. For the fans that wake up in the coming weeks with an empty feeling, perhaps this library of visualizations will provide a glimmer of comfort and distraction until the next tournament." (Nick Myers ~ The Cooper Journal)
"It was a breath of fresh air not to be surrounded by fellow ad folk. Maybe you were there, but I didn't spot you or find your tweets. There were certainly some designers and UX people. I found the lecture a mixed bag - it was certainly a lecture rather than a presentation. During the introduction and the conclusion Tufte seemed rather uncomfortable whilst reading from notes. But the core of the content, around analytical design, was delivered away from the lectern and that was when Tufte and the lecture came to life. My take out from the evening was that information doesn't care what it is; but how it is brought to life is critical for its interpretation and power as a communicator. 'Whatever it takes' was Tufte's recurring theme about how to visualise data, avoiding being a slave to a particular methodology." (MBA Blog)
"FlowingData explores how designers, statisticians, and computer scientists are using data to understand ourselves better - mainly through data visualization. Money spent, reps at the gym, time you waste, and personal information you enter online are all forms of data. How can we understand these data flows? Data visualization lets non-experts make sense of it all." (Nathan Yau)
"Being able to think visually, break down complex ideas and synthesize them into something meaningful is my forte. It's a skill that has landed me in the company of the smart and capable folks I currently work with. More importantly, I took whatever abilities I had and I gave them over to my ecosystem. In any social system, you always come to the table offering something of value rather than seeking it." (David Armano)
"If you've been reading this blog regularly for awhile, you know that I occasionally bemoan the sad state of most information graphics. Most of the folks who produce infographics lack guidelines based on solid research. In their attempt to inform, describe, or instruct, most of the infographics that I've seen fail-many miserably. I'm thrilled to announce, however, that a new book is now available that takes a great step toward providing the guidelines that are needed for the production of effective infographics." (Stephen Few - Visual Business Intelligence)
"As design work shifts to infrastructure and problem solving, sexy infographics are part of the new skill set." - (Michael Cannell - Fast Company) courtesy of bobjacobson
"As design work shifts to infrastructure and problem solving, sexy infographics are part of the new skill set." - (Michael Cannell - Fast Company) via markvanderbeeken
"This is a 20-minute talk I gave at the Web2.0 Expo in San Francisco a couple weeks ago. In it, I describe two trends: how we're shifting as a culture from consumers to participants, and how technology has enabled massive amounts of data to be recorded, stored, and analyzed. Putting those things together has resulted in some fascinating innovations that echo data visualization work that's been happening for centuries." - (Jeffrey Veen)
"If there's anything good that has come out of the financial crisis it's the slew of high-quality graphics to help us understand what's going on. Some visualizations attempt to explain it all while others focus on affected business. Others concentrate on how we, as citizens are affected. Some show those who are responsible. After you examine these 27 visualizations and infographics, no doubt you'll have a pretty good idea about what's going on." - (FlowingData)
"In this unmissable look at the magic of comics, Scott McCloud bends the presentation format into a cartoon-like experience, where colorful diversions whiz through childhood fascinations and imagined futures that our eyes can hear and touch." (TED) - courtesy of presentationzen
"Doclab is a new programme section at IDFA, investigating the relationship between new media and documentary. The main theme this year is data visualisation." (Int.'l Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam)
"A 25-minute documentary on the visual design of the London tube map, which is also coined as "The pinnacle of London Transport's modernist design", invented by an unemployed engineering draftsman, Harry Beck." (information aesthetics)
"This is the first book to draw together the wide range of maps produced over the last 30 years or so to provide a comprehensive atlas of cyberspace and the infrastructure that supports it. Over the next 300 or so pages, more than 100 different mapping projects are detailed, accompanied by full-colour example maps and an explanation as to how they were created." (Martin Dodge & Rob Kitchin) - courtesy of information aesthetics
"(...) in the presentation I argue two things: one — that the more sophisticated applications of interactive data visualization resemble games and toys in many ways, and two — that game design can contribute to the solutions to several design issues I have detected in the field of data visualization." (Kars Alfrink - Leapfroglog)
"I tried to add a comment there with some blogs I subscribe to (some already mentioned, some not) but I suspect the spam filter thought I was nuts to try posting 20 links. So here are a few other blogs/feeds you might like, if you like Flowing Data (...)" (Random Etc.)
"On Tuesday 18 September 2007, Ben Shneiderman gave a talk at HCID on the topic of information visualisation for high-dimensional spaces. Over 100 people from industry and academia attended the talk. (...) Interactive information visualization provide researchers with remarkable tools for discovery. By combining powerful data mining methods with user-controlled interfaces, users are beginning to benefit from these potent telescopes for high-dimensional spaces. They can begin with an overview, zoom in on areas of interest, filter out unwanted items, and then click for details-on-demand. With careful design and efficient algorithms, the dynamic queries approach to data exploration can provide 100msec updates even for million-record databases." (Center for HCI Design) - courtesy of usabilitynews
"User Interface designer with a focus on information visualization in conjunction with statistical methods and machine learning. Theoretical background in cognitive sciences. Years of professional experience as a web producer, designer, team leader." (Moritz Stefaner) - courtesyofpetermorville
"When the Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev published the first version of his Periodic Table of the Elements in 1869, he couldn't imagine that it would become in due time one of the most outstanding information visualisations and that many fields would use it more than one century later as a visual metaphor." (Juan C. Dürsteler - InfoVis)
Interactive map covering areas such as Data, Information, Concept, Strategy, Metaphor, and Compound Visualization. (visual-literacy.org)
"Everyday, we look at dozens of websites. The structure of these websites is defined in HTML, the lingua franca for publishing information on the web. Your browser's job is to render the HTML according to the specs (most of the time, at least). You can look at the code behind any website by selecting the 'View source' tab somewhere in your browser's menu. (...) I've written a little app that visualizes such a graph, and here are some screenshots of websites that I often look at." (WebasGraph app by Aharef) - courtesy of edwardtufte
"Visualising time or, best said, visualising the events that occur in time, is not so usual a topic. There aren't so many visual metaphors associated to it either. We take a look at them here." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Visual strategy, understood as the coordination of eye and head movements in order to perform a visual task when looking at our environment, turns out to be a feature as personal as the way we walk or write. Information visualisation enables the creation of a visual map that makes the way we see easily understandable." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"The tool is built around the basic idea that a pie chart can represent a simple yes or no decision. In this case, the decision is one often faced by managers in a tight baseball game: Should the pitcher be pulled from the game?" (visual i|o) - courtesy of bokardo
"The information age is now an electronic age. Books, magazines and newspapers, business and government records, music, movies, email — all are stored as electronic files that can only be read, played, or watched by people with the right hardware and software. Over time, changes in technology can make digital information simply incapable of being accessed. Furthermore, without separate authentication standards, digital information becomes untrustworthy. On both legal and historical grounds, people need to be able to verify a document's provenance and data integrity." (Dynamic Diagrams)
"Viewing the Miles Davis composition All Blues through the lens of ImproViz illustrates the contrasting melodic and harmonic styles of three musicians: Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley and John Coltran." (Jon Snydal - Offhand Designs) - courtesy of jasonkottke
"Visual Communication is a key component of interface design and unfortunately often under-represented in interaction design methodologies. This talk introduces the core principles of Visual Communication (with an emphasis on Visual Organization) and through many practical examples details how they can be put to use during the Web application interface design process." (Luke Wroblewski - Functioning Form)
"Animation permits the representation of change, including time in the visual equation. In this issue, we review the basic variables of animation and the profit we can extract from its use." (Juan C. Dürsteler - InfoVis!)
"After some years of a certain dispersion of resources we now have some advanced toolkits that contain diverse components within architectures that allow you to reuse components and the creation of sophisticated applications without having to reinvent the most advanced techniques, like Treemaps or semantic zooming user interfaces. Although it can appear to be very bound to the academic world, these toolkits offer to many software developing companies the possibility to include sophisticated visualisations in their product portfolio thus beginning to use 'visual thinking' in the same, with a reduced cost of approximation to those technologies, since you don't need to program algorithms, you just use them in your product." (Juan C. Dürsteler - InfoVis)
"Undoubtedly, music is one of the most engaging and emotionally powerful stimuli. Listening to music can have strong effects on people’s mood, thinking and even their physiology. I think it’s mainly because of the latter that certain songs remind us so vividly of a specific memory." (Didier Hilhorst - nundroo)
"Information Visualization aims to provide compact graphical presentations and user interfaces for interactively manipulating large numbers of items. We present a simple 'data by tasks taxonomy' then discuss the challenges of providing universal usability, with example applications using geo-referenced data. Information Visualization has been shown to be a powerful visual thinking or decision tool but it is becoming important for services to reach and empower every citizen. Technological advances are needed to deal with user diversity (...) but also with the variety of technology used (...) and the gaps in user's knowledge (general knowledge, knowledge of the application domain, of the interface syntax or semantic). We present examples that illustrate how those challenges can be addressed." (Catherine Plaisant - Univ. of Maryland - HCIL) - courtesy of usabilityviews
"Collaborative filtering is increasingly present as an integral part of commercial web sites. 'Memory based' algorithms are the most simple to implement, yet the most effective when recommending products and predicting preferences." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"The behaviour of human beings when searching for information intensively resembles that of the hunter-gatherers of our past and that of the foraging of animals. Information Visualisation tries to take advantage of this finding." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"(...) over 10,000 maps online. The collection focuses on rare 18th and 19th century North and South America maps and other cartographic materials. Historic maps of the World, Europe, Asia and Africa are also represented. Collection categories include antique atlas, globe, school geography, maritime chart, state, county, city, pocket, wall, childrens and manuscript maps. The collection can be used to study history, genealogy and family history." (About the collection) - courtesy of o'reilly network
"InfoVis.net celebrates four years of life in cyberspace. Today we review its origins, the current situation and future plans, gathering data to build a visualization of what this site has been during this time." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"The traditional way of interacting with a computer needed what Ben Shneiderman calls 'syntactic' knowledge. The graphical user interface has substituted syntactic for visual knowledge. Each one has its own advantages and drawbacks." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Digital Dashboards are real time visualisation tools of critical business indicators that help in decision making. Its use is spreading and advancing from the executive elite towards the ubiquity of weblogs and personal computing." (Juan C. Dürsteler - InfoVis!)
"Newsmap is an application that visually reflects the constantly changing landscape of the Google News news aggregator." (Marcos Weskamp) - courtesy of reloade
"The March 11th tragedy in Madrid has given rise to a cataract of information (and of emotions) some of which have been converted into visual representations that bring us closer to the what and the how of what has happened these dreadful days." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Does Cyberspace have a geography? What do we know about the nature, shape, size, distribution and geography of the Internet, the World-Wide Web and Cyberspace?" (Cyber Geography)
"Many information architects (IAs) are skeptical about information visualization (InfoViz) and its applicability to IA problems. This presentation explores InfoViz from the perspective of IA practice." (Karl Fast) - courtesy of brett lider
"Conceptual Maps are simple and practical knowledge representation tools that allow you to convey complex conceptual messages in a clear, understandable way. They facilitate both teaching and learning. Moreover they are represented naturally as graphs." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Weblog visualisation uses spatial metaphors like that of the world map or the underground lines of a city. Something so apparently unlinked to localisation requires it in order to establish a reference (?)." (Juan Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Whatever we make of the all-embracing umbrella of 'knowledge management', we do find at least one robust concept that opens up and provides useful coverage: the community of practice." (Springer)
"The advent of increasingly visual and better structured browsers like Vivisimo, Grokker or TouchGraph is beginning to shake up a world that seemed to be static. A definitive reference point appears to still be beyond the horizon, but we are definitely closer." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Visualizing dynamic, evolving documents and the interactions of multiple collaborating authors: a preliminary report." (IBM Collaborative User Experience Research Group) - courtesy of chad thornton
Lecture Notes: "Why do animations fail? Animations are conceived as a series of discrete steps. Studies show very few animations are better than static graphs." (Peter J. Bogaards)
"Interaction is a key element in learning and acquiring information. It is intrinsically dependent on time and on control. (...) By using judiciously time and control is how the majority of the best interaction systems have been built. This is an important aspect of any system since, in most cases, interaction is the key to productivity." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Visual representations have been used since the dawn of human civilization to communicate - to reveal the hidden, illustrate the intricate, explain the complex and illuminate the obscure." (Maish Nichani and Venkat Rajamanickam - elearningpost)
History Flow: Visualizing Dynamic, Evolving Documents and the Interactions of Multiple Collaborating Authors
"Most documents are the product of continual evolution. An essay may undergo dozens of revisions; source code for a computer program may undergo thousands. And as online collaboration becomes increasingly common, we see more and more ever-evolving group-authored texts. This site is a preliminary report on a simple visual technique, history flow, that provides a clear view of complex records of contributions and collaboration." (IBM Collaborative User Experience Research Group) - courtesy of vanderwal
"Information visualisation is about to go mainstream. While it may not be the killer application some expect, 'infoviz' is going to help users to manipulate data in wholly new ways." (The Economist) - courtesy of nooface
"(...) dedicated to John W. Tukey, who taught us all that seeing may be believing or disbelieving, but above all, data analysis involves visual, as well as statistical, understanding." (Michael Friendly)
"Social interaction provides us with visual patterns that help us to situate ourselves in our environment. In Internet, however, this doesnít happen so easily. Some visualisations are appearing to remedy the problem." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"The 20th century has seen many advances in different fields. Visualisation hasn't been immune to these changes that paved the way to its transformation into Information Visualisation in the two decades that preceded the new millennium." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"The history of visualisation is that of the search for new artefacts to amplify the ability to know; it's the history of writing and of maps, the history of knowledge." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"Some of the factors that I hope to illustrate are aspects of depth perception, color perception, and form perception." (John H. Krantz)
"The goal of scientific visualization is to enhance scientific productivity by utilizing human visual perception and computer graphics techniques." (HPSC Group of the University of Colorado)
"Visualising the structure of the raw text of a document helps greatly in its analysis and compliments techniques like computational linguistics by using the pattern finding capability of the human brain." (Juan C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis!)
"The use of Visual Metaphors is one of the most common ways of elaborating interfaces and visual representations. However, not all the developers think the same way." (J.C. Dürsteler - Inf@Vis: The digital magazine of InfoVis.net)
"(...) a visual environment for browsing and authoring RDF models represented as graphs." (W3C)
An illustrated chronology of innovations (Michael Friendly & Daniel J. Denis) - courtesy of cliff atkinson
"Visually navigating through a network is inherently a dynamic process, and steps need to be taken to keep the user feeling oriented and in control." (Alex Shapiro) - courtesy of nooface
"(...) recent concepts of visualization of abstract information contained in document databases." (Rolf Daessler)
A Collection of Visualizations (Rika Furuhata - Fujishiro Ichikawa Lab)
"Creating Effective Web Pages" (Redish & Associates, Inc.)
"A true science of data visualizations requires both a theory of perception and of computer graphics" (Marc Green)
"(...) metaphor may not be an essential component in the usability of VPLs" (Alan F. Blackwell and T.R.G. Green - IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages VL'99)
Maintained by Gary Ng
"Information visualization is an emerging scientific and technical area." (AT&T Labs-Research)
(Ilya Rybak et al. - A.B. Kogan Research Institute for Neurocybernetics, Russia)
"(...) the application of VR to abstract worlds like Information Visualization" (Maintained by Jerry Isdale)
"(...) the process of incorporation of knowledge through the perception of information" (Juan Carlos Dürsteler)
Visualizing Innovation: a new technique shows patterns and suggests strategies (Doblin Group)
"The study of the web as a graph is (...) fascinating in its own right" (From Andrei Broder et al. - AltaVista Company, IBM Almaden Research Center, and Compaq Systems Research Center)