When Data Science Meets Design

Friday, May 9, 2014 -
9:45 am to 10:15 am

Since opening its doors in 2001, Stamen has had the opportunity to work with a variety of companies and organizations to help turn complex information into beautiful works for the public. During this time, we’ve also had the opportunity to work with our fair share of data scientists and specialists of all kinds. These folks become key collaborators on some of our most important projects, yet sometimes their science-driven perspective–grounded in concerns about accuracy and specificity–can clash with ideas around visual storytelling and usability. These differences can become fertile ground for either an argument… or a way forward that neither party had imagined before. In these kinds of scenarios, how can we find common ground and find ways to work together? What can we learn from each other in the process to best inform our practice? This talk will address these questions, drawing from Stamen’s experience with recent real-world projects.

Design Technologist
Stamen Design

Alan McConchie works at the intersection of cartography, software, and data science. He has an undergraduate degree in computer science and mathematics, and studied geographic information systems at Hunter College in New York. He is currently a Ph.D. candidate in geography at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. His dissertation research uses OpenStreetMap as a case study to understand the social dynamics of crowdsourced mapmaking online.

He loves making cartographic visualizations that reveal new ways of seeing the world, and is passionate about creating tools that help people create their own maps and tell their own spatial stories. He is on twitter at @mappingmashups, where he hosts a biweekly twitter discussion called #geowebchat. His first and (so far) most famous programming project is the Pop vs Soda page.