Log Book

Design: Iceberg Triggers & Actions

November - December, 2016

Explorations from the iceberg metaphor and how each dimension should visually manifest in order to form a coherent and memorizable system without losing its abstract and atmospheric expression.

Initially I began building the system using specific forms for a number recorded. In order that the visualisation looked 3-dimensional, each form contained one more side than the number recorded. For example when a 5 was recorded, for any dimensions, the iceberg would have a sharp, tall, 6-sided protrusion in its mass. For a 1, the addition would be a wide, short pyramid with only 2 sides.

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This iteration is still a little clinical - maybe too clean. Part of the reason for using the iceberg metaphor is for the visualization to reflect a landscape in which the form is affected and reacts. In order to better give the feeling of a landscape, the next iteration became more atmospheric.

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In the above versions, the dimensions are manifested as follows:
Intensity: Height of the form (1: short, 5: tall)
Valence: Form color (1: red, 5: blue)
Control: Fractures in the form (1: many fractures, 5: no fractures)
Conduciveness: Sky color (1: red, 5: blue)
Arousal: Turbulence in the waves (1: none, 5: much)

Once I had a basic look-and-feel that can be developed later, I needed to start thinking about how the contextual information could be reflected in this visual. This I’ve been missing since the beginning of the trying to visual tracked emotion data.
The ice berg lends itself to well to expressing the flow in which an emotion experience is created. As I wrote about in the last post, Freud believed the subconscious (the part under the water) to be what influences our judgements and behaviors. These would be our triggers - the things that start the emotion process going. The next two parts of the process follow: the form is created by the dimensions and the reaction, what comes out of us, should be represented as such:

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Bottom forms: trigger(s)
Peak form: emotion
Smaller forms/aura: reaction

A few explorations of triggers and reactions applied to the emotion form:

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I think there can still be quite of exploration that can be done, but for now, I’m working with this version in order to develop some of the user interface and user experience for the mobile application.

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Next Post

Design: The Iceberg

27 November 2016
After forcing emotion data to look like traditional data visualization, Freud gives me an idea for a different iteration.