Accommodating Big Data in Visual Analytics

Last week I had a blast visiting Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. While I enjoyed the wineries and sunshine, the annual meeting of the Association of American Geographers was the highlight of the trip. With so many talks on cartography, GIS, and cyber science, it was my favorite AAG conference yet.

What made AAG even more enjoyable was the acknowledgement of big data within GIS (though I’d argue we’ve all been doing “big data” for decades now).

My talk, Accommodating Big Data in Visual Analytics: Pairing Computation with Cognition focused on the ways in which computational methods inform representation and vice versa. Depending on how one wishes to represent data for specific interpretive tasks, different computational algorithms and visualization techniques will be more appropriate than others. In turn, some computational methods and tools lend themselves to forms of representation that others do not. This, in my opinion, highlights the need to consider both computation and end-user cognition in the visualization process in regards to big data, where computation is more important than ever.

You can view my slides on this topic below.



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