Data Interfaces

While a data-rich scenario is quickly emerging, research on tools and methodologies to explore, represent, and communicate such wealth of information is lacking. Devices and representations able to provide an interface between data and people are needed in order to transform the raw numbers into useful knowledge and insight. This is needed in different contexts.

In research and analytical contexts the design of data exploration interfaces is needed in order to provide experts and researchers with instruments that allow to see the data in different ways, enabling exploratory overviews of otherwise overly complex datasets. Like microscopes revolutionized many scientific fields in the late 1600 allowing to see the extremely small, the development of data-imaging instru- ments can prove critical in the development of data-rich disciplines by allowing to interactively reduce complexity and help in the detection of meaningful patterns.

In communication contexts the design of tools able to harness the wealth of data in order to provide the final user with usable insight can help in the development of context-aware, personal communication. Such data-driven interfaces are needed to transform the raw data extracted from online and offline services in higher level con- tents and knowledge. The aim is that of hiding the lower level complexity in order to expose the needed information at the right time.

In this scenario, Data Interfaces aims to experiment with the development of inter- faces and formats for data-rich scenarios by merging the competences of communication design, complex systems science, and computer science.

Mixing the technical skills related to the collection and processing of large quantities of real-time data, the scientific skills necessary for its analysis and elaboration and the design skills necessary for the creation of tools and interfaces able to make it accessible by the intended user-base, Data Interfaces aims to address the open issues in the creation of tools for data exploration and communication.


Politecnico di Milano

Milan, Italy