Past Meetup

Representing Data for Human Observers with Bernice Rogowitz

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Representing Data for Human Observers: Nuggets of Wisdom from Research in Vision and Cognition

Bernice Rogowitz, Ph.D.


In visualization, we map data values and relationships onto visual dimensions to create a visual representation. But, how well does that visualization represent the features and structures in the data? How well does it highlight aspects of the data that will help the analyst make good decisions? With all the visualization methods out there, is there one that is "right?"

Using examples from financial risk analysis, cardiac modeling, and data mining, I will demonstrate how the application of insights from the study of color perception, perceptual scaling and visual attention can help guide your visualization choices. I will also emphasize the importance of matching the visual representation to the analyst’s task, and show how using color to mark semantic regions of interest can be used to discover features in complex high-dimensional data.

Biography for Bernice Rogowitz:

Bernice Rogowitz is a multidisciplinary scientist, working at the intersection of human perception, imaging and visualization. She received her B.S. in Experimental Psychology from Brandeis University, her Ph.D. in Vision Science from Columbia University, and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Laboratory for Psychophysics at Harvard University. For many years, she was a scientist and research manager at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, and is currently active in research and teaching through her consulting company, Visual Perspectives. Her work includes fundamental research in human color and pattern perception, novel perceptual approaches for visual data analysis and image semantics, and human-centric methods to enhance visual problem solving in medical, financial, and scientific applications. As the founder and co-chair of the IS&T Conference on Human Vision and Electronic Imaging, she has been a leader in defining the research agenda for human-computer interaction in imaging, driven by research in human perception, cognition and aesthetics.