Imaging datastreams

Robocop concept- Mert Kizilay
Robocop UI concept by Mert Kizilay

One of the key aspects of Sea of Dreams are the datastreams. These visualizations of various data currents are meant to give the data scanner a overall picture of what they are exploring, while also allowing them to focus in on a specific current. This piece of concept art by the designer of the Robocop reboot seemed to be heading in the direction that I imagined for the datastreams.

Most of the visualisations that you find around, search on ‘data visualization’, show only what would only be a single current to the characters in the book. If they were looking at multiple, related currents in order to gain insight from the relations between the currents, there would likely be some sort of visual language: colour, size, shape, that would assist in that process. What I find interesting about this design is that there is a focus in the centre of the datastream. The other currents seem to be supporting or elaborating what is in the central current. I do think that there would be more colour in datastreams, however. After all, if you are looking at this all the time, you would need to have some way to pick out different aspects at a glance.

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