Data as Art

Location: Mission City B5
Average rating: ***..
(3.23, 13 ratings)

In a technological age in which information saturation is prolific and the omnipresent existence of media flying exists all about us, the visualization of data to engage and effectively couple the data consumer with the data provider has increased importance and merit. Artistic visualizations and infographics tell the stories of rich data in unique, compelling ways and synthesize datasets in ways that allow them to be interpreted, absorbed, and experienced in ways beyond the spreadsheet, pie chart, and bar graph.
These are not new concepts. Edward Tufte has been advocating for data visualizations to transmit message and meaning for years. Mr. Tufted even presents his visualization of data as museum pieces. The Web 2.0 era brought us numerous data mashups using real time sources such as Twitter and Geographic Information Systems to create engagement of conversational social media in creative ways. Infographics have been translating data into rich pictures that share the story of data with mass audiences in publications such as USA Today and the New York Times.
As technology continues to evolve, the tools for creating artistic visualizations have become increasingly accessible. Tools like Adobe Flash and the Processing langauage merge visual displays of art with motion graphics to create moving pictures of Art data.

Photo of J.J. Toothman

J.J. Toothman

NASA Ames Research Center

J.J. Toothman recently returned to NASA Ames Research Center after a two year period working with Stanford University and consulting with a variety of San Francisco based startup companies. In his current role as Web Strategist at NASA Ames Research Center, he is developing a holistic strategic roadmap for the role of the web at Ames. This “strategic mashup“ integrates elements of Gov 2.0, Open Gov, social media, cloud computing, enterprise 2.0 and similar edgework concepts. This effort builds upon the role he held from 2001 to 2007. During this time, he held the position of Web Services Manager at NASA Ames Research Center, implementing numerous open source software solutions and web applications in addition to evangelizing and integrating web standards within software development teams.

In 2005, J.J. completed a Master of Arts degree in Multimedia by developing Luminance, an interactive art installation that explores non-tethered physical human interaction with digital content.

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Donn Denman
02/03/2011 8:47am PST

Titled “Data as Art”, I think “Art from Data” would be more accurate.


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