Making with Data: Physical Design and Craft in a Data-Driven World

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8.19 X 10.94 X 0.94 inches | 5.85 pounds

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About the Author

Samuel Huron, Till Nagel, Lora Oehlberg, Wesley Willett


"A mind-blowing collection! With the rich visual process descriptions, the creators invite us into their workshops and let us look over their shoulders. You will discover both an exhibition of wonderful data-inspired works as well as the backstories of each of these pieces. Whether hand-made, machine-controlled, or through natural processes, all the chapters show fascinating and bespoke creations of data objects. A much needed collection highlighting what is happening at the frontiers of art and sciences in this new field of data design."

-- Giorgia Lupi, partner at Pentagram and author of Dear Data

"What a much-needed book! Till, Sam, Lora, and Wes show us that data communication can be so much more than just visualization. There is a whole exciting world of data physicalization waiting to be explored, and the authors open the door for us and lead us through it with intelligent commentary. The book takes us to visit different artists, who explain their approaches and tools - from copper pipes to paper, from wood to electronics. It's a hugely inspiring tour. Reading this book will make you want to experiment with data in the realm of the physical."

-- Lisa Charlotte Muth, data vis designer and writer at Datawrapper

"This book has fresh inspirations from innovative artist-inventors who open up new possibilities for anyone who has data that tells a story. The screen is no longer the goal or the limit; freeing designers to explore more dimensions and shape deeper experiences to reach people with important messages about their health, communities, and climate. Data physicalizations break free into new dimensions where playful imaginations can use water, plastic, wood, or stone to fabricate data stories for public installations and private reflections. This book makes me want to turn on the laser cutter and restart the 3D printer to fabricate something startling, informative, and eye opening."

-- Ben Shneiderman, Professor, Computer science, University of Maryland, USA

"A collection of recent and diverse data-driven physical artifacts and sensorial experiences. Projects are beautifully illustrated and described in jargon-free language packed with practical information elucidating the design process, from the tools used to the context of their conception. Making with Data is an invaluable resource for educators and practitioners alike. It broadens our perspective of representing data by engaging all our senses."

-- Isabel Meirelles, Professor, Faculty of Design, OCAD University, Toronto, Canada

""Designing with Data" is one of today's key mantras. What next? Perhaps "Making with Data", as argued by professors Huron, Nagel, Oehlberg and Willett. This timely book explores new ways data is penetrating our living environment and is crossing the boundary between the physical and the digital. Innovative fabrication methods lend materiality to data, as designers experiment with the use of laser cutters and 3D printers to transform maps and charts into tactile models and artworks. A compelling read for any data enthusiast!"

-- Carlo Ratti, Director, MIT Senseable City Lab, USA