When the Wind Blows
Project due 11/28 at 9 pm Chicago time
This will be the third group project. This project is going to
focus more on finding patterns in unstructured data and presenting
Group size this time will be 3 or 4
people per group. You can chose who you want to be in a
group with, but you will be working with different people in
As with Projects 2 and 3 you should very quickly set up a web
page for your group project and send the URL to Andy and
Arthur. Each Friday of the project each team member should
post on the project web site an overview of what he/she did on
the project that week.
Each year for Viz Week there are a variety of challenges posted to
see which groups around the world can most effectively use
visualization to solve problems. We are going to look at the 120
MB dataset from the 2011 mini challenge 1 - Geospatial and
Microblogging - Characterization of an Epidemic Spread,
which is mostly time-stamped and location-stamped text messages
from a one month period.
the data is available at http://hcil.cs.umd.edu/localphp/hcil/vast11/
The solution to this mystery is available, so finding the solution
is not the object here. The goal here is to create a tool using
the touch-screen wall to easily and effectively sift through and
investigate the data, and show that the given solution is the best
match for the data and that the other possible causes are less
likely. People are getting sick. Is it an accident or a criminal /
terrorist act? Is it a truck crash, or a plane crash, or a gas
line explosion or a bomb or just a normal flu outbreak?
Your tool should allow the user to:
C you need to
- search for 'interesting' words and sets of words in
messages, dealing with synonyms and misspellings and acronyms
- graphically show changes in patterns of the words / messages
before and after the incidents in terms of topic or location
or time of day, day of week, etc
- see the locations of a given message or set of messages with
particular keywords on the map
- find people that got sick and track them over time through
their conversations and on the map
- allow the user to pan and zoom the map while the data
- add interesting people, words, events in town, etc to
dynamic lists in the app that can be saved and accessed again
later to bring back previous content on the screen
Create the tool described above to let people easily and
effectively visualize this dataset.
B you need to
Document why the given solution is the solution, using your tool.
Your tool should make this obvious. This very likely will mean
that you will need to enhance or modify your tool.
an A you need to
Investigate and document the various possible causes for the
epidemic and detail, using your tool, why they are or are not
likely solutions. Your tool should make this obvious. This will
involve doing comparisons / contrasts between different possible
solutions. This very likely will mean that you will need to
enhance or modify your tool.
You should create a set of web
pages that describe your work on the project. This should
which should have plenty of screenshots with meaningful
captions. Web pages like this can be very
helpful later on in helping you build up a portfolio of your
work when you start looking for a job so please put some effort
- 1 page on how to use your application and the things you can
do with it.
- 1 page on the data you used including where you got it, what
you did to it.
- 1 page with links to the source code and any instructions
necessary to install and run it. These instructions should
start from the assumption that the reader has a web browser on
their computer and tell the user everything else he/she needs
to know to get the code and get it running.
- several pages on what interesting
things you found using your application.
- 1 page on the roles of the different team members
Be sure to document any external libraries or tools that you make
use of - give credit where credit is due.
should also create a 2-3 minute YouTube video showing the use
of your application including narration with decent audio
quality. That video should be in a very obvious place on your
main project web page. The easiest way to do this is to use a
screen-capture tool while interacting with a scaled-down
version of the application, though you will most likely find
its useful to do some editing afterwards to tighten the video
up. Its also a good idea to have a video like this available
as a backup during your presentation just in case of gremlins.
You may want to shoot
this video on the wall itself.
page including screen snapshots and video need to be done by the
deadline so be sure to leave enough time to get that work done.
For this project the web page will be particularly important.
I will be
linking your web page to the course notes so please send me a
nice 1280 x 361 jpg image of your visualization for the web.
This should be named
When the project is done, each person in the group should also
send me a private email ranking your coworkers on the project on a
scale from 1 (low) to 5 (high) in terms of how good a coworker
they were on the project. If you never want to work with them
again, give them a 1. If this person would be a first choice for a
partner on a future project then give them a 5. If they did what
was expected but nothing particularly good or bad then give them a
3. By default your score should be 3 unless you have a particular
reason to increase or decrease the number. Please confine your
responses to 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and no 1/3ds or .5s please. I will
average out all these scores for projects 2 through 4 and keep
them in mind when assigning final grades to projects 2 through 4.
Each group will present their work to the
class and describe its features to the rest of the class. Rehearse your presentation
... several times. All team
members are expected to participate equally in that
presentation. The length of the
presentations will be 7 minutes. During each talk each
group in the audience should write one question for the speaking
group, and hand it to them at the end of their presentation. The
speaking group should add a page to their website by Tuesday 12/04 giving the questions (and
the group who asked it) and an answer to the question.
last revision 11/13/12 - deadline is now 11/28 & presentation time
now 7 minutes