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23 FEBRUARY 2014

Beautiful Science: Picturing Data, Inspiring Insight

20 February – 26 May 2014, Folio Society Gallery; admission free, London.

"Turning numbers into pictures that tell important stories and reveal the meaning held within is an essential part of what it means to be a scientist. This is as true in today's era of genome sequencing and climate models as it was in the 19th century.

Beautiful Science explores how our understanding of ourselves and our planet has evolved alongside our ability to represent, graph and map the mass data of the time.

From John Snow's plotting of the 1854 London cholera infections on a map to colourful depictions of the tree of life, discover how picturing scientific data provides new insight into our lives."

(The British Library)

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17th century • 1854 • 185819th centurybattlefield • Beautiful Science (exhibition) • big dataBritish Librarycartographychart • cholera • climate models • climate science • colourful depictions • Crimean War • datadata journalismdata visualisation • David McCandless • David Spiegelhalter • diseaseevolutionexhibition • Florence Nightingale • genome • genome sequencing • graph • Great Chain of Being (1617) • hierarchical visualisationhospitalillustrated diagramsinfographicinteractive visualisationinterpret meaningsinterpreting data • Johanna Kieniewicz • John Snow • London • Luke Howard • maps • Martin Krzywinski • mass data • Nigel ShadboltOpen Data Institute • picturing data • picturing scientific data • public health • Robert Fludd • rose diagram • Sally Daviesscience • science collections • science exhibition • seeing is believing • statisticstechnological changetree of lifeturning numbers into meaningvisual interpretationvisual representationvisual representation graphicallyvisual representations of scientific conceptsvisualising dataweather • William Farr • Winton Capita

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
31 MAY 2010

Flare: Data Visualization for the Web

"Flare is an ActionScript library for creating visualizations that run in the Adobe Flash Player. From basic charts and graphs to complex interactive graphics, the toolkit supports data management, visual encoding, animation, and interaction techniques. Even better, flare features a modular design that lets developers create customized visualization techniques without having to reinvent the wheel."

(UC Berkeley Visualization Lab)

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ActionScript • Adobe Flash • Adobe Flash Player • Berkeley (University of California)chartcode • code library • datadesigndiagram • Flare Data Visualisation • Flexgraphinformation aestheticsinformation graphics • infoviz • interactive graphicsmodular • prefuse • prefuse.flare • programmingtoolkittree • UC Berkeley Visualization Lab • visualisation

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
28 OCTOBER 2008

TouchGraph

"TouchGraph's powerful visualisation solutions reveal relationships between people, organisations, and ideas.

Explore the wealth of information in today's growing data collections with our intuitive visual interfaces. "
(TouchGraph, LLC)

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datadiagramGoogle Incgraphsearch • TouchGraph • visual interface • visualisation

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
21 OCTOBER 2008

Chronological ordering highlighting human cost of the Vietnam War

"Maya [Lin] unexpectedly won the design competition for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial while a Yale student, and it threw her into a huge storm of controversy. The controversy over Maya Lin's design showed the raw emotional wounds that still had not healed when it erupted in 1980, and Maya Lin's finished memorial showed the power of art to affect people and touch upon important issues of society.
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Lin wanted her memorial to evoke tears in the viewers, to act as a vehicle for veterans to begin to heal from their experience. One of the most touching scenes in Freida Lee Mock's documentary is the beginning scene, watching the reaction of veterans as they look at the names of their fallen comrades in the black wall. In a particular scene, two veterans are looking at the name and one veteran exclaims, 'Look at all these names!' and he begins to cry. What most moved about these scenes was how the memorial touched these veterans, how it honoured the individuals who were killed by making them more than just a statistic. A veteran mentioned that a name may not mean much to one person, but it would mean much to another. Lin put the names in chronological, rather than alphabetical order, to help individualize the names. If the names were in alphabetical order, then a loved one would be lost in a sea of Smiths or Jones or whatever that person's last name is, and it would depersonalize that individual. It would take a person longer to look up the name and find it if the names were in chronological order, but the process would be worth it to a family member or a friend."

(Angelo Lopez, 26 May 2008)

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CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
14 SEPTEMBER 2008

Beijing Olympics (2008) Medal Count Map

"Circles are sized by the number of medals that countries won in summer Olympic Games. Use the slider to view past Olympics, or click on a country to display a list of its medal winners."

(The New York Times)

[Interestingly although the map appears to have been created as a simple representation of the global medal tally the map also quite eloquently reveals aspects of the changing economic fortunes and political leanings of particular countries. Note for example Germany''s Olympic success prior to the Second World War and Eastern European success during the Cold War.]

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CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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