Throughout most of human history, mapping the world was a failure-ridden poetic pursuit — an attempt to visualize that which is just too close to see. Cartographers collected discrete signals and attempted to put them together into “the big picture.” What does the history of picturing the world tell us about the cultural origins of data, its representation, and the myth of big data?
Feminist scholars would say that visualizations privilege the eyes over the body, and critical cartographers would say that maps produce worlds that are intimately bound up with power. If that is so, then what might a feminist, critical ethics of design look like for data visualization? How do we start operationalizing that ethics?
This Databite will be hosted and moderated by Data & Society fellow Mark Latonero.