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Viz on Video [29]

A selection of keynote speeches delivered at this year's Eyeo festival

September 6, 2016

Among all the data visualization-related events out there – and there are more and more, every year – , eyeo festival is always one of the most awaited ones. Traditionally, it gathers a stellar group of speakers, and this year wasn’t different. The city of Minneapolis welcomed creative coders, data designers, and artists, from June 6 to 9, and some of the videos are already up, so we picked some of our favorite keynote speeches to feature in this edition of Viz on Video.

Hope you enjoy it:

Weird Intelligence – A talk about Kyle’s recent studies and artwork at the intersection of machine intelligence and human intelligence. This includes humans outsourcing social interaction to machines, crowds acting like algorithms to tell stories together, robots with human thoughts and feelings, and, most recently, exploration of computational systems that seem to “understand” everything from linguistic analogies to writing style, or even the basic elements of visual aesthetics. An introduction to the state of the art along with some ideas and questions about where we might head next.


The Poetics of Data Experiences (and How to Teach it) – Designing data experiences is about transformation and language. In this talk, Paolo explores through projects and experiments the rhetorical dimension of data experiences, focusing on poetry – in the sense of poiesis – as a design approach more than just a subject for visual representation. The topic is framed within his personal experience as founder and director of the DensityDesign Research Lab: a trainer’s journey from the theories of complexity to the new questions coming from the (digital) humanities, precariously walking along the border between professional practice and applied academic research.


Data Cuisine – How would a fish soup taste whose recipe is based on local fishing data? What are the best spices to use in a lasagna, if it were to represent Helsinki’s population mix? What is the taste of unemployment? Data Cuisine explores food as a medium for data expression. In each new Data Cuisine workshop, Susanne Jaschko and Moritz Stefaner go to a city, team up with a local chef and local data experts, and, together with a diverse group of participants, invent novel dishes to represent locally relevant data in a meaningful, intriguing way. Moritz Stefaner reports on the experiences from this participatory workshop series, the creative potential of non-standard information representations, and the joy of creating small, and slow, but sensually rich, data experiences.

Teaching, Tools, and the Trade – Ben Fry is principal of Fathom, a design and software consultancy located in Boston. He received his doctoral degree from the Aesthetics + Computation Group at the MIT Media Laboratory, where his research focused on combining fields such as computer science, statistics, graphic design, and data visualization as a means for understanding information.


Quantum Design – As a science groupie, a math fangirl, a Sunday physics dabbler, Paola Antonelli likes to launch in–at times facile–analogies between scientific theories and design zeitgeist (her thesis was entitled ‘Fractal Architecture…’) The time has come to tackle quantum. In this talk she attempts an exploration of how ambivalence and entanglement apply to design. Quantum Design thrives in ambiguous states, in the spaces ‘in between’—between digital and physical, high-tech and crafts, old and new, nature and artifice, developed and emerging world.


Digital Analogues – How does a magazine that covers advances in science and technology illustrate emerging ideas before the technology being described is ubiquitous? Jen Christiansen shares examples of how Scientific American illustrated topics in innovation and information at the dawn of the digital age and beyond: a time during which technological advances in imaging were being reported on before the technology was mainstream enough to produce—or share—the magazine with it.


We hope you enjoyed this selection of videos. Next week, we’ll return with more. And don’t forget to check out the video section of our infographic gallery.

Written by Tiago Veloso

Tiago Veloso is the founder and editor of Visualoop and Visualoop Brasil . He is Portuguese, currently based in Bonito, Brazil.