Pinterest! Data Visualisation

Just Pinned to Education and Digital Cultures: Big Data Humor: Power of the Pie http://ift.tt/2moCA7p

I pinned this image to Pinterest because it is amusing but also because it says lots of things to me about Learning Analytics and infographics. Learning Analytics companies are keen to promote their ‘dashboards’ where information is depicted graphically, enabling users to understand performance, trend or numbers at a glance. I am suspicious of these kind of duplo infographics which resist all nuance to deliver headline news. The visual representation of statistics is, by definition, devoid of intricate detail, but the view of information these graphics embody is more akin to advertising a reality than reflecting one. Infographics are selling us a view of information, the gathering of which has ready-encoded in it the decisions and motives behind the view it wants to promote. Advertising is designed to be appealing, persuasive and agentic whilst subtly constitutive of a social and political stance.

 

One thought on “Pinterest! Data Visualisation

  1. jknox

    ‘I am suspicious of these kind of duplo infographics which resist all nuance to deliver headline news.’

    Excellent point Cathy. I think there is an assumption that because data analytics supposedly provides more accurate information, visualising that information will make it more clear and ‘transparent’. I think your right to point out ‘nuance’ – if education is one of the ‘impossible professions’, as Freud claimed, why would we assume that it’s secrets can be conveyed so straightforwardly? I think you’re also right to pick up on ‘time’ (again) – visualisations seem to be about quick and efficient recognition of the ‘facts’. What happened to slow contemplation?

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