Data visualizations: Using data to explain the world around us

Panel presentation, Thursday, May 19, at Boston Globe. Doors open at 6 pm (cookies and coffee!), with presentations from 7-8 pm.

Ben Fry, who  is principal of Fathom, a design and software consultancy in Boston, is a co-developer of Processing, an open source programming environment for teaching computational design and sketching interactive media software. The software won a Golden Nica from the Prix Ars Electronica in 2005. The project also received the 2005 Interactive Design prize from the Tokyo Type Director’s Club. In 2007, Casey Reas and Fry published Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists with MIT Press, and in 2010, they published Getting Started with Processingwith O’Reilly and MAKE. Processing 1.0 was released in November 2008, and is used by tens of thousands of people every week.

He received his doctoral degree from the Aesthetics + Computation Groupat 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. After completing his thesis, he spent time developing tools for visualization of genetic data as a postdoc with Eric Lander at the Eli & Edythe L. Broad Insitute of MIT & Harvard. During the 2006-2007 school year, Ben was the Nierenberg Chair of Design for the Carnegie Mellon School of Design. At the end of 2007, he finished writing Visualizing Data for O’Reilly.

Glenn McDonald is the designer and product manager for Needle (www.needlebase.com), ITA Software’s graph database and platform for data collection, collation, curation, exploration, analysis and republishing. He is also the court statistician for heavy metal, and a caped data vigilante. He believes that data is important, and that computers can and should be tools for people to make sense out of what they supposedly know.

Daigo Fujiwara, an infographics designer for the Boston Globe/boston.com, was born and grew up in Japan. He came to Massachusetts as a high school foreign exchanging student and as a baseball fanatic, found himself right at home with Red Sox Nation right at home. He has also worked at the Christian Science Monitor, Inc Magazine and FastCompany Magazine.

Plenty of parking & access from the Red Line. (It’s a 5 min walk from the JFK/UMass stop.)

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