Cool new dashboard design

A colleague of mine sent me a link to a new web based dashboard designed by Sid Lee. In the book Information Dashboard Design by Stephen Few, there are many examples of how not to do it, and generally the idea of yet another dashboard does not fill me with any sense of excitement. This was one of those moments where I expected to click and run but this one really caught my eye.
While the effectiveness of the actually data communication techniques might not be as good as it could be, it is an order of magnitude more interesting to look at than the usual Excel pie chart brigade.
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Cern OpenData


Fancy yourself as an arm chair Sheldon Cooper, or are you more of a Boson the clown? Cern have made some of the data from the LHC available via their open data project. Various data sets and visualisation engines are available along with educational material to help make a bit more sense of it. This is all available from their OpenData site.

But in the words or Homer Simpson: “There’s so much I don’t know about astrophysics. I wish I’d read that book by that wheelchair guy.”

Satellite Imagery Font

While I am not a typographer per se, I do like a good font. I also really like cool technology to do image analysis, so when a project comes along the merges both, I have to gush a bit.

This recently funded kickstarter project aims to take satellite imagery and find shapes that look like letters and create a font set from it:

Aerial Bold is the first map and typeface of the earth. The project is literally about “reading” the earth for letterforms, or alphabet shapes, “written” into the topology of buildings, roads, rivers, trees, and lakes. To do this, we will traverse the entire planet’s worth of satellite imagery and develop the tools and methods necessary to map these features hiding in plain sight.

Head of Geography

An image has been doing the rounds that shows the distortions introduced when reducing a 3D earth to a 2D representation. Like all those huge maps we used to have on our walls with pins in them to show where you’ve travelled. The drawings used in the original work show the distortions as applied to a human head, something we are familiar with.


Continue reading “Head of Geography”