28 June 2011

What To Do With Numbers

so far... and more...

1. Tufte explains the temporal flip-parallelism as “enhancing the reading of differences, which is the exact purpose of comparisons in parallel.” He also states “despite the enchantment of flaps, comparisons are usually more effective when the information is adjacent in space rather than stacked in time” (Parallelism p.81) Which do you think is more effective? Do you have any examples of where one is better than the other?

2. On page 82 of Parallelism would you have been able to understand Margaret Morris' 'The Notation of Movement' without the explanatory notes? Tufte describes this example as “images in graceful parallel”. Did you find it to have 'good form' that 'is clear but not a spectacle'? Was her 'abstract notational system' understandable to you after you realized the meaning of those notations?

3. (p 83 Parallelism) “Editors of Newton's optical letters and lectures have been very negligent in such particulars, their diagrams often violating fundamental optical laws.” Does architecture have certain fundamental laws that need to be followed in parallel diagrams?

4. (p 86 Parallelism) Even though Peter Apian designed his diagrams with elaborate detail, was it as effective as the simple cube drawings used by Banchoff? When making a diagram 'less tedious' as Apian did, by changing or interchanging characters, can we complicate the understanding of it?

5. (p92 Parallelism)The cosmonauts of Salyut 6 found the wealth of information in their meter-long chart to be a “constant reminder of the lengthy ordeal ahead.” Can too much information be a burden to us? How would you compare the cyclogram of the cosmonauts with the coded images from Catich's 'Letters...' p98 ?

6. (p100 Parallelism) Can you think of a better parallel to match the names to the people in the photograph from 'Popular Astronomy'? On page 101 Tufte explains how “two thirds of 'confusing codes' can be avoided by means of thoughtful design, direct labels, and close integration of explanatory text with images.” How would you have simplified Scheiner's sunspot drawings?

7. On page 102 of Parallelism Tufte describes faulty parallelism. How is this sometimes used in the area of product design? Are we being dishonest if we use faulty parallelism in our design presentations, or is this acceptable?

8.(p ? Beautiful Evidence)How would you define a sparkline and where does its importance lie in the field of architecture?

9. (p.52 Beautiful Evidence)Did you find the use of sparklines & parallelism in “The DNA of Human Chromosome 7” easily understandable? In your examination of the 3-D scatterplot (p57) did you find it to be more or less understandable than the DNA diagram.

10. (p.63 Beautiful Evidence) “Just as sparklines are like words, distribution of sparklines on a page are like sentences & paragraphs.” What might cause are 'words' to be hard to understand and our 'sentences' hard to read?

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