Visualization/Telecon Minutes

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Back to Visualization Cluster home

October 25, 2012

Nick Del Rio VisKo: Enabling Visualization Generation Over the Web

July 18, 2012

Frameworks for Data Visualization (proceedings from the ESIP summer meeting )

December 12, 2011

Bruce Caron (New Media Research Institute) Drupal as the platform of choice for the Skolr digital meeting poster service

Robert Simmon (NASA's Earth Observatory) Methods to Enhance Climate Change Imagery for Communication

Phil Yang (GMU) Visualizing 5D Dust Storm Data

November 21, 2011

Clay Hooker and David McConville, The Elumenati

WorldViewer and WorldComposer

For more information about these software packages (which are currently in beta testing) contact Clay Hooker via The Elumenati contact form

July 14, 2011 (ESIP Summer Meeting)

Brooke Singer Superfund365: Artists and Data Visualization


Paulo Pinheiro da Silva (UTEP) Visualization Knowledge (VisKo): Leveraging the Semantic Web to Support Visualization


June 13, 2011

Robert Simmon, NASA's Earth Observatory Visualization Case Study: Eyjafjallajökull Ash

Elegant Figures Blog

May 9, 2011

Manil Maskey, UAH GLIDER: Visualize, Analyze and Mine Satellite Imagery Using a Single Tool

archived recording

GLIDER Home page

April 18, 2011

Charles Thompson, JPL Visualization Tools and Services PO.DAAC

archived recording

JPL Physical Oceanography DAAC

March 14, 2011

Kevin Ward, NASA NEO (NASA Earth Observations)

November 8, 2010

In attendance: Kevin Ward (NASA Earth Observatory), Carol Meyer (ESIP), Bruce Caron (TNMS), Marty Landsfeld (TNMS), Dan Pisut (NOAA), Lisa Gardiner (NEON), Brian Wee (NEON), Rob Simmon (NASA EO), Erin Robinson (ESIP), Chad Trabant (IRIS Data Management System), Charles Thompson (JPL PODAAC), Kerry Handron (Carnegie MNH), Manil Maskey (UAH), Steve Aulenbach (NEON), Brand Niemann (EPA), Dave Haffner (NASA AURA), Jing Li (GMU), Michael Morahan (NASA GCMD), Dalroy Ward (EPA), Greg Leptoukh (NASA GSFC), Karl Benedict (EDAC/UNM), Ned Gardiner (NOAA Climate Program Office)

Introductions – who are you where you are from? What is your interest/involvement in visualization? What, if anything, would you like to see as the contribution of the working group to the Federation and the elsewhere?

Kevin Ward (NASA Earth Observatory) (NEO), oversees group of writers, visualizers, web developers. Interests in getting at understanding what users want & how data can meet those needs. Would like to see Best Practices approach to visualizations emerge from the cluster.

Bruce Caron & Marty Landsfeld (New Media Studio) interested in building interfaces and interactions to answer problems.

Dan Pisut (NOAA Environmental Visualization Lab) interested in Best Practices from the broader community and tips/techniques for using other types of data.

Lisa Gardiner (Director of Education, NEON, Inc.) interested in using visualization to advance education, outreach and public understanding of science.

Brian Wee (Chief of External Affairs, NEON, Inc.) interested in seeing the various architectures for visualization and how the data exchanges would occur between providers and viz developers; how should providers facilitate interoperability.

Rob Simmon (Lead Visualizer, NASA Earth Observatory) interested in theoretical aspects of visualization (cognitive science – i.e. how to make clear visualization).

Erin Robinson (ESIP Federation) interested in visualization air quality data for events.

Chad Trabant (IRIS Data Management System) interested in visualization as a data selection tool by researchers/academia. Interested in data derivative products for researchers and others.

Charles Thompson (Tools & Services Lead, PoDAAC, JPL) interested in providing visual means for browsing data contained in archive, using Google Earth.

Kerry Handron (Carnegie Museum of Natural History) interested in using data visualization products created by this community. CMNH is starting a scientific visualization center.

Manil Maskey (ITSC, UAH) interested in help Earth and atmospheric science researchers use Google Earth or WorldWind to analyze and visualize data. Utilize data mining on visualized data.

Steve Aulenbach (Scientist/Cyberinfrastructure, NEON) interested in metadata, standards and documentation of visualization; interoperability as it applies to visualization.

Brand Niemann (EPA) interested in visualization to support graduate classes; semantic applicability; looking for ESIP contributing to

Dave Haffner (Aura, OMI team) involved in UV measurements, developing algorithms for OMI. Looking for better ways to look at data for their own analysis. Wants to investigate disconnect between producers and end-users;

Jing Li (PhD Student, George Mason University) interested in both service and data-oriented visualizations (3-D or 4-D) using Google Earth or WorldWind. Interested in learning new techniques for visualization.

Michael Morahan (GCMD) interested in metadata records, looking for partnerships.

Dalroy Ward (EPA) does a lot of visualization of EPA data, metadata requirements, best practices so that their work is usable and reusable by others.

Greg Leptoukh (GSFC) works on Giovanni, using WMS to serve data directly or through Giovanni. Offer statistical analysis through Giovanni (plots, graphs).

Karl Benedict (Earth Data Analysis Center, UNM) interested in web-based geospatial visualization. Looking to expand visualizations into spatial and temporal data in their clearinghouse. Best practices.

Ned Gardiner (NOAA, Climate Program Office) does climate-related visualization. Works with museum partners and others to contextualize climate information for public consumption. Visualizations as an information delivery mechanism and discussion starter for the scientific community.

The goal of this first call is to establish a game plan for getting the Cluster off the ground.

Visualization as both noun and verb

  • end result: the “visualization” (image) used to convey the meaning of the data
  • process, or act, of “visualization;” visualization as a tool for understanding, attempting to find the answer through exploration

Encourage intelligent visualization practices

  • producing visuals that exemplify best practices
  • being able to implement those best practices in a tool-agnostic manner – i.e., taking a best practice and determining how best to implement in IDL, ENVI, ArcGIS, etc.

Best practices

  • can be extensive as there are many inputs to creating visualizations
    • audience
    • environment (display technology, physical location)
    • source data (point, vector, raster, …)
    • standardization of symbols (via Jeff De la Beaujardiere)
    • maintaining provenance of data sources, metadata
  • publishing requirements: visualizations seem to undergo less rigorous peer review than the text they accompany – guidelines for reviewing visualization as part of editorial process
  • scenario where depth of best practice can be shallow
    • visualization for monitoring data production processes: very low expectation/requirements
  • high depth
    • multi-dataset representation for public outreach shown on a spherical projector in a brightly lit room

Brian Wee: relating to peer review, maintaining provenance/workflow that lead to visualization

Ned Gardiner noted that NOAA has looked at Best Practices for Science on a Sphere, though the best practices paper is not yet available.

Rob Simmon suggested an approach, short of a best practices guide, that would put together a list of things "Not to Do." Provided example of rainbow palettes that shouldn’t be used for certain audiences because they do not match how the human eye perceives/distinguishes color.

Kevin Ward suggested that the "no rainbow" approach may be a case where that is preferable for certain audiences (outreach) but may have use in other scientific or production scenarios.

Meeting was adjourned -- very impressed with the great turnout from a very broad spectrum. Good to get introductions and lay some groundwork, but obviously need to focus on a few key issues in order to have a functioning cluster.

Bruce Caron initiated the #esipviz hashtag to use for tweeting during telecons as well as a potential way for sharing via Twitter.

Minutes will be available on the ESIP wiki -- -- and that space will also be used for other organizational activities.

Next telecon is Monday, December 13 at 2pm EST.