Visual Dimensions

A new vodcast series from Phase2!

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Episode 3: Data Visualizations in Journalism

Data visualizations are an incredibly powerful way for journalists and reporters to convey information and news. This month in Visual Dimensions, we will bring in Michael Keller, an interactive multimedia reporter at Al Jazeera America, to talk about the power of data visualizations in Journalism, the burgeoning role of hybrid data visualization developers/reporters, how to make compelling visualizations within a news reporter’s short time frame, and why he contributes open source tools for the greater data visualization community. Michael will also be giving us a demo of some of his most compelling data visualizations he has created for Al Jazeera America.

Episode 2: The Craft of Building Educational Interactive Stories

It was great having Jeremy Sherlick join us to discuss content strategy for interactive experiences on the web. The talented CFR team creates Emmy award-winning interactive presentations, which educate the public about global news and analyses. Brandon and Jeremy discussed how CFR develops their engaging content strategies for their educational interactive presentations.

Learn more about how CFR builds their interactive presentations in the following resources:

  1. An in-house CMS for immersive storytelling: 7 good questions with Jeremy Sherlick of the Council on Foreign Relations
  2. CFR/Phase2 Case Study
  3. CFR- Changing The Digital Landscape


Episode 1, It's Not Rocket Science

It was so great to kick off our first Visual Dimensions episode with Rob Simmon, art director of NASA’s Earth Observatory! Brandon and Rob discussed use of color in visualizations as well as visual mapping strategies. We had a slight glitch with the Q&A during recording, but you can find the questions that were asked and Rob’s answers here:

Q: The mariner 4 images look like craypas (aka pastels) what was the actual affect being used there?

A: Colored pastels (Rembrandt) Check out &

Q: How would you choose colors for contrasting categoric variables?

A: I have written about this here: under the “categorical data” subhead.

Q: So we’ve covered scales. How do you go about choosing a contrasting qualitative scale?

A: Check out:

Here are some cool additional data visualization resources:

  • HelpMeViz: HelpMeViz is community of people working together to critique and improve each other’s data visualizations.
  • Thumbs Up Viz: This site is a showcase of interesting implementations of maps and data visualizations.
  • NASA Earth Observatory: The Earth Observatory showcases many different maps taken as a part of the research happening at the Goddard Space Flight Center.

Look out for next month’s vodcast, where we will be exploring content strategy for educational interactives with Council On Foreign Relations and we’ll get an exclusive tour of their interactive publishing tool, with Jeremy Sherlick, Deputy Director of Multimedia at Council On Foreign Relations. Register for this vodcast!

Welcome to Visual Dimensions

Blue Marble Imagery

Introducing Phase2’s video podcast project titled, Visual Dimensions. This monthly vodcast series gives you an opportunity to participate in an open conversation with industry experts about the latest strategies and tools for developing visualizations and interactive experiences!

Our first vodcast, on February 20th, will be co-hosted by NASA’s visualization expert, Robert Simmon who will discuss best practices for creating visualizations for NASA’s Earth Observatory. From use of color, to image choice, to use of symbols in mapping, Rob will take us through his tried and tested process for visually communicating data about our world.

Register here for this month’s Visual Dimensions Vodcast, happening on February 20th at 11AM EST:  “It's Not Rocket Science! - Creating NASA's Data Visualizations”