Friday, September 17, 2010

VTS: Data Visualization

Visual Thinking School
What is data visualization?

Date: Thursday, September 16, 2010
Run by: Matt Adams
Notes by: Ryan Smythe

Attendees: Employees, Offspring

Libations: Plentiful

Ingredients: groovy music, TED, audio speakers, whiteboard, note cards, markers, 11x17 inch paper

What is Data Visualization?
Main Stream Styles
David McCandless

4:00 pm - Welcome
Matt welcomed everyone to this internal VTS, especially our Dachis Group guest Kate Niederhoffer.

4:05 pm - Ice Breaker
The ice breaker involved each person writing their name on one side of a note card and sketching a pie chart on the other side to represent how they spend their time on any given day.

4:30 pm – What is Data Visualization?
Matt used Wikipedia to define data visualization. He noted that demand is growing for the field.
Examples of mainstream styles were provided:
  • Line charts
  • Pie charts
  • Column chart (vertical)
  • Bar chart (horizontal)
  • Area chart

Matt spoke briefly about David McCandlessand then shared a TED video of David speaking about data visualization. Various opinions where shared in response to the video. Matt then promoted his book the Visual Miscellaneum by sharing select pages. He also critiqued XPLANE’s work in comparison to the McCandless examples provided.

5:30 pm – Exercise: How I Came to XPLANE
Make an 11 X 17 information graphic on the topic “How I came to XPLANE”. You have 30 minutes!

Everyone had a very different approach, especially Kerwin!


6:15 pm - Plus/Delta


TED video ++
David’s accent +
David’s book +
Dialogue ++++
exercise +
ice breaker
Kerwin present!
Kate present!

Ryan has to clean up
lack of other examples
poor time management +
cut out pie charts and Wikipedia
more time for exercises +
even more exercises

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