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INTERACTIVE VISUALIZATION: HETEROGENEOUS ENGINEERING AND THE PORTUGESE EXPANSION, 2012 In one of my courses at SCAD, a classmate (Javeria Masood) and I were charged with coming up with a unique visual depiction of one of the articles we read for a course in the History and Interpretation of Innovation. One Saturday, after brainstorming a variety of approaches to the project, we found ourselves stumped. Javeria and I decided to set our work aside and visit the local Ships of the Sea museum for some relaxation. Shortly after beginning our museum tour, we were struck by the number of artifacts and 3D models that were used as visual aids to bring the museum’s inspirations to life. Soon, we realized that we needed to rethink our own project and imagine a way to tell the story of the Portugese Expansion into the Indian Ocean via a tacticle, 3D means instead of through an infographic. Thus began a week-long journey of developing a diorama and several handmade objects and sets, which became a four-panel storyboard (of sorts) that we used to invite SCAD classmates into a rather dry academic text in an engaging, provocative way. Not shown here is the way we illustrated the volta, the Portugese’s famous “turn” where they realized that counterintuitively turning their ship in the wrong direction prevented it from capsizing or running ashore. We showed this using a large hand-molded map of Africa, a ship and a large red arrow along the Western Coast.

Heterogeneous Engineering Diorama, 2012  

Photos documenting the result of a week-long journey of developing a diorama and several handmade objects and sets, which became a four-pane...

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