iSAHIB Data Towers
As part of ongoing efforts with Playing the Archive, the team is continuing it’s practice of materializing data in ways that could hopefully create avenues for clearer perceptive and tangible understanding to be formed about the various research data collected.
Along these efforts, Matthew Kenney has been working closely with Assistant Professor of Ceramics – Tom Lauerman on materializing iSAHIB‘s research data. iSAHIB is a project that seeks to understand how motivation and personality regulate the ebb and flow of people’s thoughts, feelings, and behavior in their everyday lives. One unique aspect of this study is the use of real-time data while studying lifespan development spanning four time scales – from interactions to days to months to decades. The images below are a collection of visualizations from the 3D renderings of Rhinoceros that Matt has plotted iSAHIB’s data into data towers. Each ring represents 3 data points of an individual and the vertical progression represents time.
These visual renderings of data towers has enabled Nilam Ram – Assoc. Professor of Human Development and Psychology whose iSAHIB study originated, to connect and see how the variables they are constructed leads to some emerging thoughts about “constriction and expansion of positivity” – He said, “If we imagine that the cylinder is extruding in real-time – when it gets constricted, it is like a retreat into the self (avoidance), when it expands, it is like a willingness to approach (literally, be open).” – He adds that these also reminded him of “a theoretical concept called “fragility of positivity” – which is something about how quickly a person retreats into the core protection mode and whether their positivity is reliant on external.”
Within high dimensional visual display that is sometimes called a Spider Web Graph – see image here, it represents 5 lines sticking out but containing a filled in “web” that helps see which legs are sticking out further. This seems to find similarities with how the data towers might be interpreted. The vertical axis showing how the web changes over time (similar to the disk towers) while simultaneously adding some of the meaning carried by the inside of the vessel.
This multidimensional nature of the entity (e.g. individual) at a given moment can be mapped out here. If the size of the opening is “approach/avoid” – as a physical structure, the towers for people who avoid a lot will be more fragile and less stable than those that always maintain a healthy level of approach, similarly to blood vessels. This leads to thoughts about tortuosity, i.e: how does time (the vertical dimension) become something that has more or less tortuosity? That will take some pondering.
Till more soon.