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Hacks/Hackers: The Design of Nothing

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ABC Brisbane

114 Grey Street

South Brisbane, QLD 4101

Australia

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hub4101 is proud to partner with the Brisbane Chapter of Hacks/Hackers, a rapidly expanding international grassroots journalism organization which aims to create a network of journalists (“hacks”) and technologists (“hackers”).

Monthly events open to all members of the creative, innovative and digital community - people who seek to inspire each other, share information (and code) and collaborate to invent and share ideas on the future of media, journalism and technology.

NOVEMBER MEETUP: The Design of Nothing

Andy Kirk (http://www.visualisingdata.com/) is a UK-based freelance data visualisation specialist who has delivered over 210 public and private training events across UK, Europe, North America, India, South Africa and Australia. Some of his clients include Heineken, Spotify, Intel, Hershey, WHO and McKinsey.

In this talk Andy will explore several aspects associated with the design challenges and opportunities of ‘nothing’.

Firstly, the challenges of representing and communicating null and zero: two very different states but both offering potentially compelling insights. How do you most effectively encode the absence of a value? How do you make ‘nothing’ visible? What can we learn from the absence of a data value compared to presence of a zero data value? What are some of the most enduring examples of the impact of such displays?

A further perspective acknowledges the often-neglected power of emptiness. Blank space is a vital design component but requires sound judgement, restraint and a good deal of courage. Used well it can unlock the perception of pattern, form and arrangement as explained by Gestalt Psychology. This is making a visible design choice seemingly invisible.

The final element looks at different concepts of the nothingness of invisible: what can we learn from that which is not included? How is what is included shaped by what is not? Andy will investigate some of the key considerations and illustrate the various techniques with classic and contemporary examples.

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ABC Brisbane

114 Grey Street

South Brisbane, QLD 4101

Australia

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