When we first started with the test class, I was wondering how the different mode of visualizing thermal results data would make an impact on performance understanding. We’d intensively worked with traditional line, bar, flood etc. charts/plots in previous classes, of course, and always observed that the extra level of abstraction- how to understand what’s going on in a building from a non-spatial chart, basically – made it ever so slightly more difficult for students and teachers alike to “get it”. Still, I always regarded traditional data representations as “hard and objective”, up to the point of beginning to second-guess whether the spatial mapping stuff I’ve worked on would be able to stand up on its own, and what other representations we might begin using alongside it.
I shouldn’t have worried, really. At the halfway point of this class, it’s become rapidly apparent to me that the design insights you gain through the spatial data representations - in my humble opinion - far outclass the avalanche of bar charts we’d relied on previously. That’s because you suddenly know exactly where stuff is happening, when it is happening and how it compares to other simultaneously occurring situations. If you’re in the business of tweaking and cajoling still pliable design states to make them perform better, that level of observational power seems to make a real difference. I hope to present class outcomes on this site when the show is over- at least one design will end up being published in a paper for BSO14- should peer review allow. (go back to the previous class impressions post | next class post)