The first day of the visualization workshop was very good. I learned quite a bit about the current state of the art in biomedical visualization, and even more important, who to talk to learn more. Overall, though, it strikes me that while visualization tools are really interesting, we’re neither familiar enough with them, nor are they easy enough to interpret, to be as amazingly powerful and transformative as they should be. We’re still in that phase where every tool is a little different, and each has to be translated into something more familiar. But that will change.

Even when you work with really smart people, it’s nice to spend time with other really smart people. It’s not often you can have Japanese food and have a long talk about whether the term “collective intelligence” is just a metaphor or a genuine social/psychological object, and if the latter, how you would go about testing it.

via flickr

But I’m kind of cut off from things. Did something happen in New York?

I ought to be packing and going to bed, but I’m procrastinating; it’ll take me about 10 minutes to pack, I tell myself, and I don’t have to be at NSF tomorrow until the comparatively luxurious hour of 9 (given that I was on the train to the National Academies at 7:45, and the NSF is very close, this is luxurious), so instead I’m sitting in the big easy chair, listening to music.

[To the tune of Genesis, “Turn It On Again,” from the album “Duke”.]

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