Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Many Eyes

From O'Reily Radar:

"IBM today announced Many Eyes, a site for sharing and commenting on visualizations. Martin Wattenberg, who developed the original version of the treemap we use for our book market visualizations as well as the awesome baby name voyager, and Fernanda Viegas, who worked with him on the equally awesome history flow visualizations of Wikipedia, are the geniuses behind this project.

I asked Martin and Fernanda how they compared themselves to swivel, and Fernanda replied:
You also asked if we see our site as "Swivel for visualization". That phrase isn't quite accurate (any more than Swivel is "Many Eyes for data" ;-). Both our site and Swivel are examples of a broader phenomenon, which we call "social data analysis," where playful, social exploration of data leads to serious analysis. At the same time the two sites fall on different ends of a spectrum. Swivel seems to have some neat data mining technology that finds correlations automatically. By contrast, we've placed our emphasis on the power of human visual intelligence to find patterns. My guess is that both approaches will be successful because social data analysis is a powerful idea.

Martin added:

In Many Eyes our goal is to "democratize" visualization by offering it as a simple service. We also think that there's something special about visualizations that gets people talking, so we placed a big emphasis in design and technology to let people have conversations around the visualizations."
From the site:

"Many Eyes is a bet on the power of human visual intelligence to find patterns. Our goal is to "democratize" visualization and to enable a new social kind of data analysis. Jump right to our visualizations now, take a tour, or read on for a leisurely explanation of the project.

All of us at the Visual Communication Lab are passionate about the potential of data visualization to spark insight. It is that magical moment we live for: an unwieldy, unyielding data set is transformed into an image on the screen, and suddenly the user can perceive an unexpected pattern. As visualization designers we have witnessed and experienced many of those wondrous sparks. But in recent years, we have become acutely aware that the visualizations and the sparks they generate, take on new value in a social setting. Visualization is a catalyst for discussion and collective insight about data."

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home