In Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey (not to be confused with their most Excellent Adventure), the duo are killed and sent to Hell. On their way to an eternity of punishment, Death gives them the ability to escape their fate if they can best him in a game of their choosing. The wager seems to be an obvious one to take: If you lose, you are stuck in hell for eternity; if you win, you can leave. However, if you do not play the game, then you are still stuck in Hell without the ability to leave. In a previous Continue reading Using private information to beat Death
The Atlas of the Real World provides a potentially powerful visual tool that re-sizes nation-states on a globe based on their rank or gravity on particular issues: The Atlas of the Real World uses software to depict the nations of the world, not by their physical size, but by their demographic importance on a range of subjects. Here, we select a series of travel- and news-related maps Starting with basic land mass, the 18-globe series has some highlights such as Net Tourism, use of airplanes, and Post-WWII war deaths. Obviously it is not a new technique, but the quality and breadth of Continue reading The Atlas of the Real World
Thanks to Geoff McGovern for pointing us toward a fascinating essay in Wired. Chris Anderson posits that the accessibility of information has vaulted us into what he calls the Petrabyte Age, in which information is not a matter of simple three- and four-dimensional taxonomy and order but of dimensionally agnostic statistics. It calls for an entirely different approach, one that requires us to lose the tether of data as something that can be visualized in its totality. It forces us to view data mathematically first and establish a context for it later. Given how much data is readily available, Anderson Continue reading Did Data Kill Theory?
I am not a visually oriented person or, more appropriately, I am less than stellar at design. This may not be a surprise to anyone that has seen my attempts to assemble a wardrobe, but this is also true in the sense of organizing information – whether it is in a paper, on a poster, or for a conference presentation. As such, I am compelling myself to learn two programs/languages this summer that will both allow me to overcome my shortcomings ~ LaTeX and R. Yes, my devotion to wysiwyg interfaces and minimal .do files might be crumbling a bit. Continue reading When Form can Overwhelm Content