For Final Crit


Present your final, independent project, Tuesday, May 8, 12-2 in the Fine Arts conference room.

Have your project ready for review at noon - projection, installation, etc.

Final Project (2012) Folder

Please remove your proposal and replace with final project title, link (media or web), and project description.

Make sure projects 1, 2, and 3 are in their folders.

Bring drinks, cups, and sweets—I'll order pizza.

Type Client


If you didn't know, there are system and design fonts available to you. The system fonts are always available, the design fonts have to be accessed through the Universal Type Client. Follow instructions on the PennDesign IT site, here.

Talk To Us

The last course readings are Khoi Vinh-Talk 2 Me and Bubbles, Lines, and String, by Peter Hall. The first reading is from last year's Talk To Me exhibition catalog at MoMA.

The second reading is from last year's Graphic Design: Now in Production exhibition catalog at the Walker Art Center.

For the discussion I'd like each of you to respond and show one (or two) examples of design that relate to your interests (your final project or other work).

Let's convene for discussion on Tuesday, April 17.

Schedule From Here


March 29: Quantify Happiness due. Marie Frogeard returns for crit - 915 in conf roomPost to Project 3 page: project name, your name, brief description, files/links

April 4: Happiness opening at ICA

April 12: Independent Project review/graduate student meeting with critic

April 24: Last class

April 26: Make-up class, 10-1p

May 8: Final critique - present Independent Project, all work due Post to Final  page: project name, your name, brief description, files/links

Paula Scher Conversation


For class on Thursday, Feb 23, we're changing pace and focusing on design and historical style as practiced by Paula Scher. Scher, a principal at Pentagram, is giving a lecture on typography in Meyerson on Thursday at 530 and we've got her for an hour or so for a conversation on design. She has a new book, MAPS, and if there is time maybe we can show her some of your mapping projects.

Please read these two short essays about design, style and history:Borrowed Design Ch.4-1No More Rules, 79-81

And view these sites, short videos:TED talk Scher video portrait Blog post about appropriation in design

Measuring Well-Being


For Tuesday, Feb 28 To kick-off the next project, Marie Frogeard, Graduate Student at Penn's Postive Psychology Center, will join us for discussion.

View these short videos:

Sagmeister: 7 Rules for Making More Happiness

Take the following surveys at this site (you must create an account).

  • The CES-D questionnaire
  • The General Happiness Questionnaire
  • The PANAS
  •  The Satisfaction with Life Scale

And complete the reading:

Doing the right thing - Measuring Well-being Read section 2, "Subjective measures of well-being" and section 4, "Psychological theories of well-being."

National Accounts of Well-Being

Independent Projects

Please format proposals as follows: • Title • Abstract/description stating goals/objectives • Possible data sources • Proposed media • Bibliography/resources

Final Projects Should Be:

Driven by Data – quantify the data: structure/order/categorize to find form(s) Creative  –  the design should be an original interpretation of the data Revealing – designs should enable discovery, understanding, realization Complete – the design should fully visualize the data Engaging – meet (and exceed) expectations of your audience Documented – cite sources and describe methodology Portable – projects should exist as objects, web sites, files, images, prints, etc. that can be archived on blog

Research Sources:

Martin Wattenberg's design research page.

Fathom,Ben Fry's design studio

Mirko Lorenz' Data Driven Journalism page.

NYTimes Visualizations, and more here.

All the Code blog

Mapping Examples

These are a few examples of some maps that Dan, Tom, and I will discuss in class tomorrow: Neu-York: An Alternate-History Map of if the Nazis Conquered NY (discussed in a post here)

London Tube Map: New and Old

NYC's Design Scene

Musical NYC Subway Map: Alexander Chen made a version of the NYC subway map that plays music as the trains intersect routes. (Video on linked page) --> I'm particularly interested in this usage of animation as time and music as interaction in the visual space.

The United States of Autocomplete - This gives a whole new spin on stereotypes via Google autocomplete.

XKCD Map of Online Communities (updated version!)

Maps as a metaphor: Omelette Recipe (how useful is this?)

There are also a ton of interesting maps at under the maps tag.

Maps and Mapping

mapping experience2


Where/Abouts, Else-Where Mapping, Janet Abrams, Peter Hall

else-where mapping intro


In Envisioning Information Edward Tufte describes micro/macro narratives. These narratives are actually small, detailed stories that make up larger coherent stories. “Simplicity of reading,” he writes, “derives from the context of detailed and complex information, properly arranged.” He goes on to describe the rich interface to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington that is largely dependent on the chronological rather than the alphabetic listing of the names of 58, 000 dead soldiers. Jan Scruggs and Joel Swerdlow write in To Heal a Nation, that “chronological listing was essential to designer Maya Lin’s vision for the memorial. War veterans would find their story told, and their friends remembered, in the panel that corresponded to their tour of duty…. Locating names would be like finding bodies on a battlefield.” And when names are found, after walking downward into the memorial’s slight grade, visitors see their own living reflections and the names of the soldiers in the etched polished black granite.


InfoVis 2012

Final Projects Should Be:

Driven by Data - quantify the information used, order/categorize, and cite sources Creative Visualizations - the forms of the design should be original interpretations of the data

Revealing - designs should enable discovery, understanding, realization

Complete - the design should fully visualize the data, engage, and meet (and exceed) expectations of your audience

Portable - projects should exist as objects, web sites, files, prints, etc. that can be archived on blog

and ready for presentation at final crit, May 3, before noon.