List of Physical Visualizations
and Related Artifacts
With tag “pragmatic”

150 BC – Greek Orrery

An orrery is a mechanical model of the solar system. The left image shows the Antikythera, the oldest known orrery. The middle image shows a virtual reconstruction. The right image shows a contemporary orrery. The Antikythera mechanism is an ancient analog computer designed to predict astronomical positions and eclipses. It was recovered in 1900–01 from the Antikythera wreck, a shipwreck off the Greek island of Antikythera. The instrument was designed […]

Added by Melanie Bacou & Pierre Dragicevic. Category: Physical model. Tags: , , , ,
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1865 – Hofmann’s Croquet Ball Models

August Wilhelm Hofmann was the first to introduce physical representations of molecules into lectures during his Friday Evening Discourses presentation "On the Combining Power of Atoms" at London's Royal Institution of Great Britain in . He introduced a colored set of four croquet balls to represent atoms (hydrogen, oxygen, chlorine and nitrogen), implanted with a fixed number of sticks corresponding to each atom's valence.  Thus we distinguish the chlorine atom as univalent, […]

Added by Fanny Chevalier. Category: Uncertain / disputed. Tags: , , , ,
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1915 – Wire Models of Factory Worker Movements

3D wire models of hand motion paths (or chronocyclegraphs) created by Frank Gilbreth, a pioneer in the study of motion in the workplace. In his 1917 book, Gilbreth explains how he created these solid models from time-lapse photographs, and how useful they are to study and teach human motion. Left image: Wire model of foreman on drill press. This shows “positioning” in the midst of “transporting.” […]

Added by Pierre Dragicevic. Category: Passive physical visualization. Tags: , , , ,
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1999 – World’s Largest Solid Terrain Model

In 2006, a mysterious 900x700m solid terrain model with military facilities was discovered by a German Google Earth user next to the Chinese town of Huangyangtan. It was quickly identified as a 1:500 replica of a disputed area in Tibet between China and India 2400km away, with perfectly matching orientation. Chinese authorities claimed the model was built 7-8 years earlier as a tank training facility. It is unclear […]

Added by Pierre Dragicevic. Category: Physical model. Tags: , , , ,
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2007 – Wable: Web Behavior Shown with a Dynamic Bar Chart

A dynamic bar chart visualizing one's online activity. From the company's website: The personal feeds from webapplications like Plazes, Flickr, and Last.fm tell much about the activity of an individual on the internet. In this project we aim to explore how you can visualize the changes of your web identity over time and create a physical link between your virtual and real identity. The interface consists of both […]

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2010 – Dynamic Bar Chart to Visualize One’s Finances

A design project by Swedish designer Hampus Edström to help people keeping an overview of their financial situation. Sources: Hampus Edström, project presentation. Yanko Design blog.

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