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Visual Based Research The Need For Transparency Drew Baker Kings Visualisation Lab.

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Presentation on theme: "Visual Based Research The Need For Transparency Drew Baker Kings Visualisation Lab."— Presentation transcript:

1 Visual Based Research The Need For Transparency Drew Baker Kings Visualisation Lab

2 Interactive Experiment The subject (it) is a house. It has four windows. There is a tree to the side of it. There is a cat in the top window. Smoke is coming out of the chimney. There is a garden path leading to it. From the information below reconstruct the object being described using pen and paper.

3 Predicted Outcome

4 Valid Outcomes

5 Interpretation & Creation Processes Available Data. Ideal forms. Cultural archetypes. Convention. Assumptions. Preconceptions. Priorities. Personal aesthetics. Conscious decisions. Unconscious decisions. Arbitrary decisions.

6 The Mausoleum of Halicarnassus... the Mausoleum; such being the name of the tomb that was erected by his wife Artemisia in honour of Mausolus, a petty king of Caria, who died in the second year of the hundred and seventh Olympiad. … this work came to be reckoned one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The circumference of this building is, in all, four hundred and forty feet, and the breadth from north to south sixty-three, the two fronts being not so wide in extent. It is twenty-five cubits in height, and is surrounded with six-and-thirty columns, the outer circumference being known as the "Pteron." … above the Pteron there is a pyramid erected, equal in height to the building below, and formed of four and twenty steps, which gradually taper upwards towards the summit; a platform, crowned with a representation of a four-horse chariot by Pythis. This addition makes the total height of the work one hundred and forty feet. Trans Bostock & Riley, 1855 Pliny The Natural History 36:4(4)

7 Visualising the Mausoleum Heemskerck 1572 Van Ehernberg 17thC Newton & Pullman 1862 Oldfield 1894 Alder 1900 Peterson 1906 Fergussson 1907 Lethaby 1908

8 Misapplication of Visualisation Illustration or primary research? Visualisation is not reconstruction. Use as proof of thesis. Propagation of doubt. Contextualisation issues. Approaches Science vs. Arts & Humanities.

9 The D.I.K.W. Model (Cleaveland, Zeleny, Ackoff et al) Increasing understanding at the cost of purity. Obscure Derivation Process. Linear progression. Data + manipulation = information. Information + context = knowledge. Knowledge + application = wisdom.

10 Importance of Transparency Increasing visual literacy. Ubiquitous computer generated images. Media and consumer generated expectations. Lack of transparency compounds errors. Changing research methods.

11 Can Metadata Help? Yes … Ideal for systemising the recording of information regarding Data Objects. Precise description of Data Objects. Controlled vocabularies. Agreed standards i.e. formats, dates etc. However … Grounded in quantifiable and static properties. Bound to Data Objects. Highly difficult to record ephemeral ideas, feelings, discussions, choices. Difficult to record new Data Objects formed from existing ones.

12 Transparency Specification Requirements Complement Metadata not simply replace it. Record non-linear processes and structured procedures. Balance access and use requirements. Integrate and interface with existing working practices. Allow auditing of the thought processes and rationale within a visualisation at any point.

13 The Paradata Concept Focus on processes, analysis and interpretation of data. Neutrality of data. No distinction between data forms. Data relevance, timeliness, reliability and accuracy. No neutrality of context. Context capture. Intellectual capital retention.

14 Paradata Content Selectivity. Evaluation. Exploration of ideas. Medial solutions. Entropy. Cultural assumptions. Stylistic decisions. Inference. Implication. Possibilities. Probabilities. Failures.

15 Paradata & Metamorphosis Hypothesis A (in red). Alternate Hypothesis B (in blue).

16 Paradata Conclusions Records processes, decisions and reasoning behind visualisations. Communicates research rationales. Provides explorable data sets. Enables evaluation of interpretation. Provides appropriate context. Stimulates further debate and research.

17 Paradata – Product and Process The interpretive process, once documented, constitutes a research artefact, which is more valuable than any single visualisation outcome.

18 Thank you for your attention. Drew Baker Kings Visualisation Lab Centre for Computing in the Humanities Kings College London

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