Visualization is a ubiquitous technology, just like telecommunication. However, unlike a telephone system, humans play an integral part inside the “box” of visualization. This poses a significant challenge in establishing a theory of visualization. While information theory, which underpins tele- and data communication, has shown to be applicable in many aspects of visualization, it becomes inadequate when we consider various phenomena of perception, cognition, emotion and interaction in visualization. While it is a piece of computer-assisted technology, it cannot distance itself from fundamental questions (e.g., truth, data, information, and knowledge), some of which have been explored by philosophers for thousands of years. We are inspired to address this challenge by building on existing concepts and discoveries in disciplines such as communication, psychology and philosophy.
About the speakers
Min Chen developed his academic career in Wales between 1984 and 2011. He is currently the professor of scientific visualization at Oxford University and a fellow of Pembroke College. His research interests include visualization, computer graphics and human-computer interaction. He has co-authored some 150 publications, including his recent contributions in areas of volume graphics, video visualization, face modelling, automated visualization and theory of visualization. He has been awarded over £11M research grants from EPSRC, JISC (AHRC), TSB (NERC), Royal Academy, Welsh Assembly Government, HEFCW, Industry, and several UK and US Government Agencies. He is currently leading visualization activities at Oxford e-Research Centre, with a team of researchers working on a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary research topics, ranging from the sciences to sports, and from digital humanities to cybersecurity. His services to the research community include papers co-chair of IEEE Visualization 2007 and 2008, Eurographics 2011, IEEE VAST 2014; co-chair of Volume Graphics 1999 and 2006, EuroVis 2014; associate editor-in-chief of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics; and co-director of Wales Research Institute of Visual Computing. He is a fellow of British Computer Society, European Computer Graphics Association, and Learned Society of Wales.