Direction 2016

Direction 2016

Above: Jacob Bijani & Pasquale D'Silva dressed up as Dracula, talking about animation and game development at Direction 2016.

This was my 7th year in attending Web Directions, now known as Direction. A two-day conference (plus masterclasses) with inspiring design talks and passionate attendees. It's my personal favourite and how my career was launched in Sydney.

As I did in the past, here is a series of speaker and MC portraits I took during the conference. Missed it? Don't worry, Ben Buchanan compiled a large list of notes for you. The ending keynote is also available as a post-speech transcript with slides, arranged by the amazing Maciej Ceglowski.

Special thanks to all the attendees, speakers, volunteers, venue and conference organisers who made this event possible and awe-striking this year.

CityLab Melbourne Design Sprint

I was invited to be part of CityLab's design sprint in October 2016 to brainstorm and prototype a community engagement software solution with a group of 10.

Bringing together City of Melbourne employees with experts from creative agencies and the technology sector, we're moving at pace—from concept to prototype in 3.5 days—to test and trial new ideas and city services for the community.

Interaction Design for Education Designers

Interaction Design for Education Designers

Listen to the talk or download the MP3:

You can apply design principles in your work, too.

I gave a talk at the Learning Analytics and Education Data Seminar, University of New South Wales. Half or more people in the audience were educators and instructional designers in academia. While this talk was structured for them, the principles are applicable for other fields.

In this talk, "Design as Invitation to Interaction", I presented three barriers to designed objects, and used case studies as well as examples of good and bad design to show how they can be over come. They are:

  1. Mistimed, misplaced, misused
  2. It's dangerous to go alone!
  3. Technology is creepy

I referenced several video productions and documents I was involved during the talk. You can follow along:

You can find a copy of my slides (PDF), and slides below.

Moving Towards D3 v4

D3.js is a popular data visualisation framework for Javascript and the web. In July 2016, Mike Bostock released the new version, v4. To celebrate the new release, I gave this talk at the CSIRO data science webinar. The content covers: what is D3? Why do people use data visualisation? What is it for? I show examples of recent works, and point to a couple of resources. Then, D3's enter and exit pattern is briefly outlined. I also talk about the modularisation of D3 v4, as well as a couple of libraries that go with it.

Smoke and Fire

Smoke and Fire

Smoke and Fire (live website) is an interactive visualisation of air pollution in Australia, particularly shipping plume along the east coast of New South Wales. The aim was to present the data to experts as well as the general public, communicating issues around air pollution and air quality monitoring. 

I developed WebGL-based visualisation along with a set of Python scripts to convert the pre-processed satellite data into a web-friendly format. 

To illustrate air pollution issues, we took a vector-based representation of the globe, overlaid with opaque colours representing different types of pollution sources.

The brighter the colours are, the denser fine particles filling that region. Blue represents PM2.5 particle, or particles at 2.5 micrometers diameters. Yellow represents shipping plumes and red spots are strong emission sources where a bushfire has occurred, or a significant amount of smoke has been registered. 

The visualisation was exhibited at the Clean Air Society of Australia and New Zealand (CASANZ) conference in September, 2015.

Smoke and Fire made it into Kantar Information is Beautiful Awards longlist.

That's me in the middle.

That's me in the middle.

Source code is open source on Github here.

I also gave a talk on the development and design process of Smoke and Fire at OzViz 2015. You can see the entire talk with presenter notes here.

In the future we hope to update it as new data become available.



Above: "Laughter", based on a community translation of Henry Bergson's 1900 essay, "Le Rire".

This year, Phil Gough and I co-authored digitally generated artworks based on public domain books archived by Project Gutenberg. We are proud to say that our work is being featured by the SIGGRAPH Digital Arts Community

Below: "Knowledge", based on Alexander Phillips' 1915 essays published in "Towards a Theory of Knowledge."

Next: "Morals" (unpublished), based on a 1912 reprint edition of David Hume's 1777 work, "An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals".

Pause Fest 2015

Pause Fest 2015

I had the amazing chance to drop by Pause Fest for Saturday's content. The event was held in Federation Square in Melbourne, with over 1,100 attendees registered. They totally smashed it!

Photos feature (not exhaustive): Tim KTim Büesing, Sarah Rowan Dahl, Alexander ChungSimon PembertonJess ScullyMark PullyblankJames Noble, Alex Young.

Happy Valentine's Day.

Golden Fleece

Throw anything and watch it go BOOM!

You are the protector of the sheep and gold. When the vikings invaded, you are their only hope.

Bombard the vikings into bits! Scare and scatter their formations! Throw anything you have at them to stop them from taking the gold!

This game was originally developed in the 48-hour Hectic Games Jam, and have been presented at St Leonard's TAFEResearch Visions and Make Code Play.

Julian Wilton did the whole visual design. Hanley Weng and Xavier Ho (me) did the programming.

Hanley wrote up a nice post on the process.

Web Directions 2014

Web Directions 2014

This year, the awespiring, thought provoking and insightful conference Web Directions is held at Seymour Centre near the University of Sydney, where I am based. We have worked closely with the conference organisers John and Maxine to record the event as complete as possible. On Thursday, my camera left a trail of visual memories encoded in these pixels.

You can see the program schedule here. Talks are (mostly) recorded, and will be progressively made available online starting mid November.