DNC: Hind Sight is Always 20/20

My friend Luke DuBois has a fantastic lightbox version of his piece Hind Sight is Always 20/20 up at the Democratic National Convention in Denver this week. The work creates eye charts out of the State of the Union speeches from every President. The most frequently used words are at the top of the chart in large type, progressing down to the less frequent. A good indicator of the attitudes and pressing issues of the time can be seen in the patterns of the words.

This is one of the better examples of data visualization artwork I have seen lately. Luke is wise enough not to turn the frequency of the words into abstract blips or scrolling 3d letters, and he has found a good metaphor for the presentation in the eye chart. I saw him at Maker Faire a few months back, and he was lamenting that it was “impossible to find a mid range light box…they are either crap, or obscenely expensive”. It looks great though..If anyone is in Denver this week, they should definitely check it out.

Here is an overview of the work and an interview with Luke.

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