Howard Rheingold: Can images stop data overload?

Advanced Cyber/IO
Howard Rheingold

Can images stop data overload?

I use mindmaps with my students so they can literally see the information they read in the texts in a visual, connected, lateral form. “In a lab in Sussex a group of people have had their brainwaves scanned while completing a series of tasks, individually and in groups, to see if data visualisation – presenting information visually, in this case a series of mind maps – can help.

The results showed that when tasks were presented visually rather than using traditional text-based software applications, individuals used around 20% less cognitive resources. In other words, their brains were working a lot less hard.

As a result, they performed more efficiently, and could remember more of the information when asked later. Working in groups, they used 10% less mental resources.”

Source Article:  Pretty pictures: Can images stop data overload?

Phi Beta Iota:  “Data Visualizations” is a better term.  Data visualization in context is even more useful.  Images alone are a form of data pornography.  Data visualization in the context of the intelligence process — requirements analytics, collection management, source discovery and validation, multi-source fusion, compelling timely presentation, and elicitation of feedback from the supported decision-maker(s) is a whole new ballgame.  We still do not do this because no one from CIA to Google to IBM to etcetera has been serious about analytics.  All the “smart city” stuff is still at the granular level of data and no where near the meta level of intelligence.