Sept.23/2008

It’s hard to maintain a blog, especially for someone who’s writing is as bad as mine.

Anyway… I’m having a good time interning at BMWDesignworks, since now I get more time after work, maybe…and just maybe…this time I can really sit down and work on this blog stuff…=_=

 

So I’ve been doing some research on information graphics and data visualizations in the past month. It’s interesting to see that there are so many people out there working on this topic, but most of them seem to be doing the same thing. A lot of works looks more like scientific researches than design works. For example, if you type in “Social Network Analysis” in google image search, you’ll find tons of messy “spider web” images generated with no more than three graphic elements. Dots, lines, and colors. Lots of them are even too complicated to understand or to read. In the end, a lot of these visualizations end up as complicated network mapping, which does not inform anything at all.

So definitely, that’s not where I want my thesis to go.

I think it’s very very important that we remember what our goals as designers are, and remind ourselves from time to time that design is a matter of communication with your audiences. What does our design really bring to the audience, how is it interesting to the audience, how does it attract or impress the audience. I think these core questions should be brought up again and again in the process of design. Information graphics as well as data visualizations has a lot of potentials in itself. However, if we lose focus of what we were meant to do as designers, and just wander off to whatever awesome fancy crazy graphics we like, then we’re no longer doing design anymore. In that case, it’s not design, and it’s not art, it’s just something that you do to make yourself happy.

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