This is the result of over a year of late nights and weekends and the desire to completely disregard implementation and my current skill level when thinking up the concept for a piece.
Naturally much of the time was spent scratching my head and had I done it again now I would probably finish it in a much shorter time, but this is also a reason why I wanted to do it, the next time I make something I might get that extra bit closer what is in my head.
You know what they say about aiming for stars and hitting treetops.
During my time at the Fraunhof Gesellschaft - Institut für Medienkommunikation, I participated in the development of the netzspannung.org Knowledge Maps. The basic idea behind these Maps is to graphically present and communicate the content of the netzspannung.org database as well as visualising metadata about the content. The graphical visualisation presents the data in a intuitive way, so the constellations of the data form a statement about their contextual sourroundings. They are part of the
The Knowledge Maps are part of the
Boris Müller has put online documentation of Poetry on the road 2006, a poetry festival for which he creates a computational design identity every year. A specific text is used as raw material, then treated by Müller’s software in some way to create a visual representation. This visual is then used for posters and other publicity materials, including the book that is released every year.
Eschewing the more magical approaches of previous years, the 2006 edition has seen Müller has gone firmly in the direction of information visualization. Words in a poem are given a numerical code by adding the values of their letters together. This number gives the word its position on a circle, which is marked by a red dot. Gray lines connect the dots in the sequence the words they represent appear in the poem. The diameter of the circle on which the dots are placed is decided by the length of the poem. In this way several poems can be represented in a single image.
"This year, our concept is based on a very old concept of encoding text. We assigned a numerical value to every letter of the alphabet. Adding the values of all letters, one gets a number that represents the overall word. (For example, the number 99 would represent the word »poetry«.)
Using this system, an entire poem could be arranged on a circular path. The diameter of the circle is based on the length of the poem. So you can see the short poems in the centre of the poster, while the longer ones form the outer circles.
Red rings on the circular path represent a number. As many different words can share the same number (»poetry« shares the 99 with words like »thought« and »letters«), most rings represents different words. The thickness of the ring depends on the amount of words that share the same number.
Finally, gray lines connect the words of the poem in their original sequence. So solid lines represent repetitive patterns in the poem.
Like in the years before, the computer program was not only used to generate the image for the poster. It was also used for brochures and the cover of the book that accompanies each festival. Furthermore, the program was used to generate the divider pages in the book. So the poems of each wirter are introduced by an abstract visual representation of themselves".