Keynote Sessions
Revolutions in Mapping the Digital Universe: Stories of Satellites, Supercomputers, and the Art of Data Visualization
Event Type
Keynote Sessions
Registration Categories
TimeMonday, 18 November 201913:00 - 14:45
LocationGreat Hall 1&2
DescriptionThroughout history, maps have served as cultural compasses for political perspectives and dominant worldviews. Rapidly-increasing surveillance satellites and survey science are revolutionizing digital mapping of space and time. Sensors collect while supercomputers process massive amounts of digital data that visually reveal an earth and universe in constant change and motion. Breathtaking, time-evolving visuals of our planet and the infinitely vast deep-sky are possible. Computer graphics and data visualization will play critical roles in these emergent fields.

Production-quality data visualization movies can be informative and help convey vital documentary stories of the forces of nature, create empathy in audiences for our beautiful planet, and reveal humanities place in the vastness of intergalactic space. However, artistically-rendered numerical data is often indistinguishable from movie special effects. In a global market of alternative facts, will visualizing massive amounts of data bring greater understanding or obfuscate issues such as climate change? How inclusive or uncertain is data? How do data visualizations in science educational IMAX movies and other large-screen documentaries enable the general public to better understand complex processes?

Cox will provide a visual feast in the art and science of data visualizations created within the context of storytelling for documentary films. She will demonstrate the power of story and digital maps of natural phenomenon developed through data science and computer graphics; and will transport the SIGGRAPH audience in a virtual tour through hurricanes, tornadoes, stars, galaxies, and beyond.

The session includes the Opening & Awards Ceremony.