This is the archived SXSW 2012 schedule. Please see the current schedule here.

Intent & Impact: How Visualization Makes a Change

#sxsw #VisImpact

The rising amount of data exhaust of the past years has created the need for more and better tools to analyze what lies within this massive amount of raw material. Visualization leveraging the human cognition proves to be an invaluable tool to explore, digest, analyze and communicate the information. We reveal patterns, trends, relations or dependencies that were buried before. But, what happens after we have created such an elaborate and powerful visualization and released it to the world? How does the it affect the beholder? How does it help shaping his opinions or even changing his behavior? Because, at the end of the day, visualization is simply a means to an end — a tool to achieve a bigger goal. We have agreed that visualization as an instrument for analysis and communication works. Now, let's answer the question how visualization can make an actual impact on education, economics, politics, society and the digital revolution.



Adam Bly Founder

Adam Bly founded Seed, ScienceBlogs, and, and is the editor of "Science is Culture: Conversations at the New Intersection of Science + Society" (HarperCollins). He has lectured at the World Economic Forum, The Museum of Modern Art, Harvard, MIT, The Royal Society, and the State Department on the future of science and its role in society. In 2007, he was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. He began his career at the age of 16 as the youngest guest researcher at the National Research Council of Canada, where he spent three years studying the biochemistry of cancer. He now lives in New York.

Benjamin Wiederkehr Managing Dir Interactive Things

Benjamin is User Experience Designer and wholeheartedly passionate about making things understandable. He is founding partner and managing director of Interactive Things, a design and technology studio based in Zürich, Switzerland. He has helped clients like the UNDP, IKEA, Sony, FreshBooks or HelloWallet to unleash the power of data by creating intuitive and engaging user interfaces and data visualizations. Benjamin is also the editor in chief of, a resource for news, insights and inspiration in the field of data visualization and infographics.

Moritz Stefaner Truth & Beauty Operator

Moritz Stefaner works as a “truth and beauty operator” on the crossroads of data visualization, information aesthetics and user interface design. With a background in Cognitive Science (B.Sc. with distinction, University of Osnabrueck) and Interface Design (M.A., University of Applied Sciences Potsdam), his work beautifully balances analytical and aesthetic aspects in mapping abstract and complex phenomena. He is especially interested in the visualization of large–scale human activity. In 2010, he was nominated for the Design Award of the Federal Republic of Germany; his work has been exhibited at Venice Biennale of Architecture, SIGGRAPH, ars electronica and Max Planck Science Gallery. He is part of the advisory boards for the Places and Spaces Exhibit and the Digital Communities category at Prix Ars Electronica, and serves as a reviewing expert for the Future and Emerging Technologies programme of the European Commission. He has co-authored books for publishers like O’Reilly and Springer and has spoken and lectured on numerous occasions on the topic of information visualization.

Robin Richards Information Design Dir JESS3

Born on St Helena Island, in the South Atlantic Ocean, Robin studied in Colchester, Essex, UK, before returning to St Helena, where he worked as a teacher, ordnance surveyor and in local media.  While on the island, Richards started and ran his own design business - the only one a 1,500 mile radius - and, as the story goes, owned the only imac and ipod in the South Atlantic for some time. In 2009, he moved to Bristol, UK where he started work with a new digital start with a focus on infographics, before moving on to become part of the JESS3 design team. Where he is responsible for overseeing their infographic output, while also working on on data visualisation across web and mobile platforms. His work has been featured on Techcrunch, Flowing Data, Fast Company, Gizmodo, BBC, Guardian, Alltop, Foursquare (I voted) and, his personal fav - informationisbeautiful. 

Tal Siach CMO

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