Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

Imagining a Physical Future for Digital Journalism

322 views

Published on

Presentation by Alice Corona at Data Journalism UK 2019, Salford UK May 2019

Published in: Education
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

Imagining a Physical Future for Digital Journalism

  1. 1. Alice Corona Data Journalism UK, Manchester (UK), May 3 • 2019 Imagining a Physical Future for Digital Journalism
  2. 2. Project Leader at Batjo I have been practicing my craft working in data journalism and data literacy trainings since 2014: first as a freelancer, then as lead data journalist at the Amsterdam-based startup Silk until 2016, then again as a freelancer. I am now a freelancer offering consultancy and teaching in the field of data communication, visualization and processing. From 2018 I am project leader at Batjo, a Google DNI2018-funded project promoting the use of data physicalization among journalists. I love to work with activists, journalists, no-profits and Universities. And to solve problems with Python.
  3. 3. Batjo helps journalists learn digital fabrication skills to create physical and data driven news installations for their local audiences
  4. 4. Ehmm… Data driven news what?
  5. 5. Data Strings • Spoon Vs. Fork, SWAB, the International Art Fair of Barcelona By: Domestic Data Streamers Physical data, others are doing it
  6. 6. Walkable Affinity Map By: ENAC Images found in Rodighiero, D. 2018. Printing Walkable Visualizations. In: Proceedings of the 5th Biennial Research Transdisciplinary Imaging Conference,TI2018, 18-20 April 2018, Edinburgh, UK. DOI: 10.6084/m9.figshare.6104693 Image copyright: Alexandre Gonzalez 2016 (left); Alain Herzog 2016 (right) Physical data, others are doing it
  7. 7. Constraint City / the pain of everyday life by Gordan Savicic Physical data, others are doing it
  8. 8. ● Reporting and data visualisations take form of a physical 3D “news installation” ● Rely on all of the audience’s 5 senses to communicate stories. ● Set the stage and the mood for how data-driven pieces are consumed. Install data investigations in a public park, a museum or a library. Physical data, for journalists
  9. 9. OK… I get it… but… why?
  10. 10. Cognition ”Illustrations of the exploratory procedures and their associated material and object properties, adapted and redrawn based on Lederman and Klatzky [2009]”. Illustration by Simon Stusak. 2015. Exploring the Potential of Physical Visualizations. In Proceedings of the Ninth International Conference on Tangible, Embedded, and Embodied Interaction (TEI '15). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 437-440. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/2677199.2691604
  11. 11. Shape coding for aeronautical controls via Alberto Zamarrón "Haptics: Touch sense still makes sense" Great overview of why the sense of touch is vital in many cognitive tasks. Information retrieval
  12. 12. Data & Visual Literacy Tool Scenes from Hans Rosling’s famous talks: Don’t Panic — End Poverty (left) Population growth explained with IKEA boxes (right)
  13. 13. Inclusive Participation Participatory Data physicalisation @ TED Med 2017 Milan By: Know and be live + Free University of Bozen-Bolzano & Matteo Moretti 3D printed visualization automatically generated by The VizTouch software Retrieved from: Craig Brown, Amy Hurst: VizTouch: automatically generated tactile visualizations of coordinate spaces
  14. 14. Data journalism pieces won’t be read in solitude, on smartphones, but become an event for the whole community, an opportunity for journalism to establish a durable physical presence in the public agora. Instead of compressing more and more information in fewer and fewer pixels of screen size, newsrooms can embrace the opposite: slower and bigger news experiences. Data journalism that is “sits there” in the public space can encourage an informal and casual approach to engaging with complex data stories: more inviting to novice and non-expert digital users, while also promoting data and visual literacy. Ultimately, the hope is that physical and digital can be interwoven to face storytelling challenges in a way that they are mutually enhancing.
  15. 15. Getting practical: how?
  16. 16. “Data Driven News Installations” A Digital Fabrication Cookbook for Journalists
  17. 17. “Data Driven News Installations” A Digital Fabrication Cookbook for Journalists ● Three projects, thoroughly documented (step-by-step text instructions; screencast videos, diagrams, photos, code snippets, output files) ● Projects require only free open source software to be completed. ● Techniques are reproducible everywhere there is access to digital fabrication machines (Hacker spaces, FabLabs, your cousins garage….
  18. 18. The cookbook is a tool to promote the knowledge of digital fabrication skills among newsroom professionals. While it is targeted at tech-savvy users, it doesn’t require any prior knowledge of digital fabrication. Its main goal is both to educate about basic open source tools and techniques, and to promote a creative approach to crafting physical data driven installations. For this latter reason, we chose the format of a cookbook: just like cooking recipes, also the digital fabrication recipes published are open to customizations and variations. In fact, each recipe is presented alongside with a suggestions on different outputs that can be obtained by modifying the provided recipe. To make it easier to understand the general workflow involved in designing and fabricating objects with digital fabrication techniques, all the recipes are organized in the same sections, each section referring to specific step of the workflow 18
  19. 19. 19 COOKBOOK RECIPES SECTIONS TASK-SPECIFIC TUTORIALS live screencasts screenshots/photos diagrams and schematics commented code snippets text explanations 1.Data Walk 2.3D Data Map 3.Light Data Bars 1.Overview 2.What you need 3.3D Modeling 4.Fabrication 5.Assembly 6.Presentation 7.Resources
  20. 20. Fig.1: Render of the “Data Walk” in proper scale 20
  21. 21. Data Walk DATA WALK is an installation that encourages a fun and intuitive way to interact with data. It consists of one or more large 3D wooden line chart(s) on which the participants can step and walk, thus engaging their sense of balance and touch to perceive the steepness, magnitude and slope of the data points and of the overall trend. Workflow can be reused to produce scaled-down versions to install on tables. Note: for logistics reason (mainly space), we made a prototype of a scaled-down, tabletop version. The tutorials, assembly instructions and files provided however refer to the walkable version. 21
  22. 22. Fig.2: Photo of the developed physical prototype, front-view 22
  23. 23. Fig.3: Photo of the developed physical prototype, top-view 23
  24. 24. Fig.4: Photo of the developed physical prototype, zoom on text details 24
  25. 25. A user going through the tutorials to create the DATA WALK will be exposed to the following digital fabrication tools and techniques: 1. Bind data values in a spreadsheet to geometrical properties of a 3D model, like lengths and widths, using FreeCAD (open source). More advanced users can the use this same technique to create more complex shapes than a line chart. 2. Prepare file to engrave text, both for engravings with CNC milling and laser cutting 3. Create Gcode files, translating visual 3D models into a precise set of commands for the digital fabrication machines 4. FreeCAD open source software for 3D modeling 5. Inkscape open source software for graphics 6. CNC milling machine 25
  26. 26. Fig.5:: Render of the “3D Data Map” hanging from the ceiling 26
  27. 27. Fig.6:: Render of the “3D Data Map” hanging from the ceiling, bottom view 27
  28. 28. 3D Data Map 3D DATA MAP is a flexible installation that allows you to physically change removable 3D data layers on top of a map and to use the sense of touch to interact with the data. You can insert positive values on top and negative values on the bottom of the map, for an effect that is impossible to really obtain with 2D graphics. The same techniques can be used for data driven extrusion of any type of geometry: grids, administrative boundaries, buildings, etc. With a few small modifications, the same design can be used to produce a series of small multiples 3D maps. And the 3D data layers, when not on the map, can be hanged on a wall as 3D infographic posters. Note: for logistics reason, we didn’t hang our prototype from the ceiling but used supports to keep the components in place for the photos. 28
  29. 29. Fig.7: Photo of the developed physical prototype, all components 29
  30. 30. Fig.8: Photo of the developed physical prototype, base map layer details 30
  31. 31. Fig.8-9-10: Photos of the developed physical prototype, negative data layer details 31
  32. 32. Fig.11-12: Photos of the developed physical prototype, positive data layer details Fig.13: Photos of the developed physical prototype,legend details 32
  33. 33. A user going through the tutorials to create the 3D DATA MAP will be exposed to the following digital fabrication tools and techniques: 1. Work with shapefiles, maps, geo boundaries and elevation to produce 3D models using Blender (open source) 2. Engrave headlines, axis labels, tick labels and annotations with Inkscape + FreeCAD (both open source) 3. Slice a 3D model to prepare it for 3D printing using Slic3r (open source) 4. Use a 3D printer to fabricate 3D models through additive manufacturing 5. Use a CNC milling machine to fabricate 3D models through subtractive manufacturing 6. Create Gcode files, translating visual 3D models into a precise set of commands for the digital fabrication machines 33
  34. 34. Fig.14:: Render of the “Light Data Bars” installation 34
  35. 35. Fig.15:: Photos of the developed physical prototype, example of interaction 35
  36. 36. Light Data Bars LIGHT DATA BARS is an installation that promotes an informal and participative approach to data. Each LED bar has a switch to set one of the two possible modes. If the switch is in position 1, the number of LEDs that light up is determined by the data. If the switch is in position two, the participant has to try and guess the correct data value by applying an amount of force on a sensor (more force = higher value) and the LEDs light up accordingly to such value. In the interaction, the user is both grasping a general feel of quantities through a non-visual sense, while also being surprised by how close or far its guesses are. 36
  37. 37. Fig.16-17-18:: Photos of the developed physical prototype, details of the case housing the switch, sensor and Arduino circuit (inside) 37
  38. 38. Fig.19-20-21:: Photos of the developed physical prototype, details of the LED milled wooden frame with its 3d printed components (LED lenses, axis tick and label, wall mount support) 38
  39. 39. A user going through the tutorials to create the LIGHT DATA BARS will be exposed to the following digital fabrication tools and techniques: 1. Electronics basic: creating a circuit connecting Arduino Uno microcontroller to sensors and LEDs using a breadboard and a few jumper wires 2. Reading electronics schematics to reproduce and prototype circuits 3. Code an Arduino to reading JSON data and use modify a physical object’s status based on the data (example: turn on/off a LED or color its light of a certain color depending on the data) 4. Model objects in FreeCAD (open source) 5. Slice a 3D model to prepare it for 3D printing using Slic3r (open source) 6. Use a 3D printer to fabricate 3D models through additive manufacturing 7. Use a CNC milling machine to fabricate 3D models through subtractive manufacturing 8. Create Gcode files, translating visual 3D models into a precise set of commands for the digital fabrication machines 39
  40. 40. Characteristics of each recipe ● Main goal is educational and the cookbook encourages you to adapt the recipes to design most suited for your topic, setting and narrative needs. That’s why we opted for a “cookbook” open approach, which favors re-adaptation, re-interpretation, and a learn-by-doing attitude. ● All of our designs and tutorial are based exclusively on open source software. ● Each of the proposed data installations has been designed so that it responds to three main criteria: a. Journalistic relevance b. Learning opportunity c. Advantages of physicality
  41. 41. 41 COOKBOOK RECIPES SECTIONS TASK-SPECIFIC TUTORIALS live screencasts screenshots/photos diagrams and schematics commented code snippets text explanations 1.Data Walk 2.3D Data Map 3.Light Data Bars 1.Overview 2.What you need 3.3D Modeling 4.Fabrication 5.Assembly 6.Presentation 7.Resources
  42. 42. 42 1. Overview In depth overview of the project so that you can assess whether it is right for your case. Details on what type of data patterns and stories the installation is useful for. Design strengths of the project, including things like whether the installation is reusable, modular, scalable, etc. Fruition strengths of the project, for example whether it engages multiple sense, fosters collaboration and participatory interaction, etc. Suggestions for possible customization options in terms of size, appearance and materials. Indication of the level of effort required to reproduce it, in terms of time, costs and technical difficulty. Ideas on what types of customization options you could implement. Fig.2: Screenshot of “Data Walk” overview page Fig.1-2: Screenshots of “3D Data Map” overview page
  43. 43. 43 2. What you need Section includes information on the material, hardware and software needed, as well as an estimate of time and costs you should expect to allot. The chapter also explains precisely what is the expected format/structure of the dataset(s) you should use to follow through the steps seamlessly if you are replicating the project your own data. Fig.3: Screenshots from “3D Data Map” "What you need" page
  44. 44. 44 Fig.4: Screenshot of “Data Walk” 3D Modeling page 3. 3D Modeling Tutorial on how to produce the digital 3D model of the installation components and on how to setup microcontrollers. The tutorial is structured with different levels of accessibility, so that you can both watch the video of the process and/or follow-up by reading the detailed explanation about what is going on in each step. You can also directly download the files with the final results if you get stuck or wish to apply quick customizations without repeating the whole workflow. Depending on the project, some of the things you will do in this phase are: ● Binding the datapoints and spreadsheet to visual elements such lines, curves, lengths and width ● Building the physical components of the installation that you will use to host sensors and motors to record and animate the data ● Building physical boards with engraved information about the data, axis ticks, labels and annotations, titles, and so on. ● Program (Arduino) microcontrollers to read data from sensors and control interactions and appearance Fig.5: Screenshot of “Light Data Bars” 3D Modeling page
  45. 45. 45 4. Fabrication Step-by-step guide with video, text and photos on how to transform your digital 3D model file into a physical object through digital fabrication machines. This section covers the transformation of your 3d digital model into a physical object. Generally speaking, this process consists of two main steps:: ● First, you generate a G-Code file. Such file is essentially a conversion of the digital model into a series of instructions that the machine can understand and follow to convert the digital model into its physical counterpart. The G-Code commands included in the file instruct the machine on things like how to move, which coordinates to follow in tracing paths, how deep to cut (if using a CNC milling machine), what measurement unit to follow, and so on. If you are using a 3D printer, you will also need to figure out whether the project needs supports (for example when printing bridges, overhangs and suspended structures). ● Secondly, you set up the basic parameters on the machine and upload the G-Code file, so that the printing or milling can begin. In this phase, you won't have to actively do anything, although it is recommended that someone stays close to the machines so that, if something goes wrong, you can stop the process in time before wasting material or causing damage. Fig.6: Screenshot of “3D Data Map” Fabrication page Fig.7: Screenshot of “Data Walk” Fabrication page
  46. 46. 46 5. Assembly In most cases, once your digital designed has materialized as a physical object, you will still need to apply the final touches manually. What you do in this phase will greatly depend on your project. For example, you might need to: ● Screw, glue, and/or join different pieces together ● Fit sensors and/or electronics components in their casing ● Color, paint and/or gloss arts of the object ● Sand and smoothen wooden parts and edges ● Connect wires This section contains infographic instructions on how to assemble your physical data installation in a few steps. Fig.8: Screenshot of “Data Walk” Assembly page
  47. 47. 47 6. Presentation Suggestions on how to present the physical news installation. Fig.9-10: Screenshots of “Data Walk” Assembly page
  48. 48. 48 7. Resources Links to useful resources to help you in your project. Fig.11: Screenshot of “Light Data Bars” Assembly page
  49. 49. Want more?
  50. 50. Collaborate
  51. 51. NICOLÒ MERENDINO Design & Digital Fabrication Designs and crafts electronic music instruments using only open source software. ALICE CORONA Data Journalism & Data Viz Tells stories with data: from the data collection to the data visualization. @alice_coronaalice@batjo.eu @Chihauccilcontenicolo@batjo.eu BATJO Bits, Atoms and Journalism info@batjo.eu batjo.eu @batjo_data https//medium.com/batjo

×