Here follows an excerpt of an interesting post on Advertising Age last month titled Data Visualization Is Reinventing Online Storytelling by Garrick Schmitt:
“Today’s consumer seems to have an insatiable appetite for information, but until recently making sense of all of that raw data was too daunting for most. Enter the new ‘visual scientists’ who are turning bits and bytes of data — once purely the domain of mathematicians and coders — into stories for our digital age…
Publishers: The New York Times, which has always done stunning infographic work, is helping to push data visualization to a mass audience with its ‘Visualization Lab.’… Similarly, the Economist employs data visualization to graphically represent an ongoing conversation as part of its ‘Debate’ series, which enables the user to track the developments and change in sentiment on a daily basis.
Advertisers: Visa, as part of its new ‘Go’ campaign, is integrating data into its advertising. The ‘Go’ microsite features seemingly random bits of data (16,438 people in Paris smiling back at the Mona Lisa) that the user can explore to see how Visa is ‘helping more people go places and do things.’…
Products: Flickr, the online photo-sharing service from Yahoo, just recently released the Flickr Clock a browser — and very nifty advertisement, actually — that showcases the videos that users are now able to upload to the site… .
Agencies: The Flickr project was created by Stamen Design, a small San Francisco design studio that has been behind some of the most impressive work in the infographic space. The firm has created the SFMOMA ArtScope project which is a completely interactive and visual browsing tool that makes browsing the 3,500 objects from the museum both immersive and entertaining. The firm also created Oakland Crimespotting, a service that elegantly — and frighteningly — maps crimes occurring across the city and enables users to sort through the data in a personally meaningful way (e.g. block-by-block).
Artists: The rock band Radiohead is working to turn data visualization into an art form with its music video, ‘House of Cards.’ Using neither cameras nor lights, the band employed two technologies called Geometric Informatics and Velodyne LIDAR to capture 3D data and transform it into a series of stunning images. Radiohead recently opened up the data to the world, in partnership with Google, to remix.
All of this data visualization is, of course, really just a new way to tell stories (or create experiences) out of the very base matter of the web itself. Data visualization is probably not a foreign concept for anyone familiar with the work of information-design pioneer Professor Edward Tufte, but it’s the advances in technology at the presentation layer and the new found ability to tap into once hidden data sources that is enabling these new visual scientists to chart a new narrative course…”
Check out also Visual Complexity.