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Meet the Teams: Canvas

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Team: Canvas

Country: Australia

Team Leader: Tim Wray

What ways of seeing can Linked Open Data bring to our collections? Offering unparalleled access to structured knowledge, we often envision it as a giant nebulous cloud, bringing together the silos of data into a conglomeration of nodes, links and connections.

But how can we envision these connections in a meaningful way? How can we represent these knowledge structures at the macro level? How can we create visualisations of Linked Open Data that convey meaning and entice curiousity?

As an independent researcher, I’m interested in creating immersive interactive experiences for museum collections within the digital medium – be that on the Web, the screen or the tablet device.

The physical museum exhibition is crafted by a careful selection of works that exploits the spatial properties of the physical building to present works thematically, chronologically, or by some other means that expresses a narrative. In my work, I rely on the spatial concepts of pathways and divergences as a framework for visualizing my interactive experiences – allowing visitors to explore and browse in ways that mimic a thematically induced exhibition built from concepts mined from data. I’ve built prototypes and concepts that have expressed this ideal, and I’m currently looking to incorporate Linked Open Data so that I can provide enriched data to seed and create more meaningful pathways. The work is intended both as an investigation into new conventions for expressing online collections, and as a case study on how Linked Open Data can be represented in novel and compelling ways.

My work is based on the idea that humans think in terms of concepts, associations and similarity, and that we are fundamentally curious creatures. It is based on over 15 years of research into conceptual clustering and I’m currently investigating how concept lattices can be used to mine, link and depict themes that create landscapes of pathways that are inviting to the curious explorer.

Photo Credits

Montreal skyline photo CC BY from Flickr Manu_H
BAnQ elevator/stairs CC BY-NC-SA from Flickr 917Press