“In social data exploration, a visual display becomes the catalyst for conversation and collective data mining, analysis, and conversation.”
Martin Wattenburg, 2005
Buildings breathe data. Our homes shelter technology that quietly counts in the background of our daily lives. We cook; we wash; we sleep. All the while, small electronic gadgets tally numbers. How many of us know how many gallons of hot water we use daily? Residential water meters are often hidden in dark basements. As a media artist, I design eco-visualizations, or software that creates sounds and images from environmental information to encourage people to conserve resources and practice good environmental stewardship.
The prototype above is a sketch for an upcoming public art installation at the new National Center for Supercomputing Applications in Urbana, IL. Increased electricity loads will make the tree shrink (move mouse down) and lower electricity loads will allow tree growth (move mouse up). Flocking fireflies simulate network traffic. The pond shrinks and grows based on water loads in the building. The installation will be realized in fall 2006.