Spatial Information: Geographic Data Visualization

Data visualization is a powerful tool for visual communication that balances design and technique and is made all the more relevant by today’s data-driven world. Visualizing data with maps has a long history, from the public health breakthrough of John Snow’s cholera map to the call for social justice represented by Ekene Ijeoma’s Refugee Project.

TouchDesigner is a powerful tool for 3D and spatialized data. In this workshop participants will learn how to represent data associated with geographic information and how to make that visualization interactive using TD. Participants will learn best practices in data visualization, handy techniques like isometric visualization, heat maps, and using text in 3D. We will explore how to use Python to parse data, how to create UI and interactive camera animations, how to use polar coordinates for representing data on a globe, and more.

This workshop will start with micro-examples of common data visualization techniques that will demonstrate how to translate and encode data into color, shape, size, arrangement, and how to transform these qualities over time. Next, the session will focus on representing a real data set on a globe through instancing, using materials and instance parameters (in order to vary the representations of data). Then the group will address generating and locating text with a 3D model. Finally, the instructor will describe how to create an interface for interactive navigation and browsable data layers.

2:30 pm
6:00 pm