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  Sunday, July 4, 2004

Dan and Pete put what I'm thinking better than I can, so I'll let them speak:

American Flag(This is also my Sunday column in the San Jose Mercury News.)On Independence Day, 2004, how fares American liberty? Brilliantly, if you compare the United States with the tyrannies that still control the lives of countless people. Not badly, if liberty means the right to seek economic gain in a capitalist system -- especially if you're starting with the right connections and a privileged background. Not as well, when you look at growing pressures on longstanding freedoms. Governments have exploited fears of terrorism to curb many precious liberties, and technology has continued to help snoops of all kinds invade our privacy. More... [Dan Gillmor's eJournal]


Pete McCloskey: Patriotism (and shame) on the Fourth of July. The word "patriot" is too precious to allow it to be used by the thundering rhetoric of politicians that patriotism requires not only "supporting the troops" but also supporting the foreign policy that puts them at risk. [Dan Gillmor's eJournal]

12:57:07 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

Post: Info Viz is Not the New OS. So What?. What is interactive information visualization? Let's first look at information visualization, or info viz for short. Info viz is exactly what the name implies - methods of visualizing data, typically large amounts of it, in a coherent and organized manner. A simple bar chart, pie chart or graph is an example of information visualization. More complex visualizations can be found within just about any work Edward Tufte works on. Interactive information visualization, is info viz that can be manipulated. You might even say it's info viz with an ... interactive component!... [OK/Cancel]

Or, for example, the newsmap or  Stamen's In The News, both graphic depictions -- treemaps -- of the state of the world's news based on what appears in Google's news aggregator. Interesting, fun to look at, but what's it mean? Look at today's newsmap and it looks like the most important thing happening today is Wimbledon. Look at Stamen's site, you can find a little square centimeter representing Maria Sharapova. It would be easy to read too much into either depiction of the news. As the description of the newsmap says, "It is not thought to display an unbiased view of the news, on the contrary it is thought to ironically accentuate the bias of it. "

12:49:53 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

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