Artemy Lebedev of Designer’s Block articulates the problem we’ve discovered after diving into big data:
There is no way to think up an original and extraordinary design—it can only come as a result of pursuing a given task. In the same way running down a list of words is different from making a narrative.
As FlowingData adds:
This applies to visualization too. When you don’t have a question to answer or a simple wonderment about something, you end up staring at a bunch of numbers with no clue what to do with them. Want to test this out? Go to data.gov and make something useful.
via Visualizing data: ask a question first.
Security & Defence Agenda (SDA), a Brussels-based think tank, is hosting “Security Jam.”
Security Jam is an online conference where thousands of representatives and experts from around the world will provide input into security strategies and analysis of threats to international peace.
The Jam Session is to be open to defence and security specialists and non-specialists alike with the aim of widening the security debate beyond purely military matters. The growing importance of NGOs in security thinking and practice is due to be reflected in the Jam Session’s week-long discussions.
Register at this URL: http://www.eyecone.com/sda/
What is a “jam?” Here’s a video about online jamming, how to find your “myJam” page, bookmarking discussions, etc. Very cool! Watch the video here.
Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern explains why counter-terrorism is in “shambles” and the path toward fixing it: http://consortiumnews.com/2010/010510c.html. (Via the excitable and apparently left-leaning Consortiumnews.com.)
On the other hand, we seem to be approaching a convergence point between data visualization and data analysis. Univ. of Maryland computer scientist V.S. Subrahmanian is working on a technology to help soldiers figure out where insurgents are hiding their bomb supplies: “Using data from a series of related bombings in Baghdad, [a new analysis system] system was able to predict – within less than a third of a mile in eight out of 14 cases – where explosives caches were actually found.”
And Palantir just added a new post about intelligence integration in its amazing Palantir analysis blog:
Intelligence Integration in Palantir: An Open-Source View of the Afghan Conflict