Claim Your Idea!

Each group must chose a different subject to visualize. This will ensure no direct competition between groups and also much more lively and interesting classes, where you see what others are doing. To ensure this, once you have an idea of what you want to visualize, go to this spreadsheet  and check if no one has proposed it before. If not, go to this form and fill it in (just once per group), reserving that subject for your group. You just need a short sentence to do this, not the entire deliverables for Checkpoint I. Reserve your idea early and then develop it in those deliverables. 

Some Ideas

Below are a few ideas of things you may wish to use as subject for your visualization. If you do not want to think of anything else, of find any of these attractive, give it a go!
  • The Rise of Bullshit: You all know how we must use a webservice resorting to SOAP on an asynchronous secure channel to do a peer-to-peer connection instead of using a cgi-script, etc. Complete nonsense, of course. But what is not nonsense is how buzzwords rise and fall in popularity. Sometimes it is the same thing, repackaged, that gives rise to a brand new buzzword that will give consulting firms millions in contracts to implement the "hottest and newest"... Can you scrape, for instance, blog posts or tech news articles (or stackoverflow, etc.) for the use of certain keywords along the years? What was all the rage in 1996? And 2006? 
  • Complexity of a (natural) language. Compare across languages? Use the compressibility level of texts (simplest, more redundant languages compress more)? Other metrics? Plus: is a language becoming simpler or more complex across years/centuries? Can you tell, from samples/old texts/novels. Or maybe a similar analysis for programming languages? There is something to be said about some requiring one line and others 20 just to write a hello world...
  • Popularity of soccer teams in different countries. Who has the most fans? How are they distributed (what is the second country in the world with the most Benfica fans?). How does it compare to Manchester United? Relative to the population of PT and EN, in proportion, maybe?
  • Competitiveness of different sports (leagues, countries). A well known measure of competitiveness (not in Portugal where competitiveness is really low...) is the number of different winners in the last X seasons (you'd be surprised at the high number for other sports than soccer). If more teams win, it means that teams are more balanced and there is more competitiveness. Is the Portuguese league any worse than Spain's or France's? Is soccer worse than basketball or american football? Does it correlate with the players in the teams? Coach? Economics of the country?
  • Books and Reading Habits: Goodreads allows you to find out which books were published by each author, each year, their ratings, who read them, how long it took, etc. What can you show us about people's reading habits? Which authors write easier prose (the ratio time_to_read/num_pages is less... or is that just more interesting and captivating books?). Which authors are more prolific? Does that pay off (more readers per book?). Whose authors published several obscure books before that one hit that made them known? 
  • Visualization Tool for Researchers (INESC-ID): Who is the researcher that publishes the most? Can you find cohesive groups of people that publish together? Do research groups work together? Which venues are the ones researchers publish more? 
  • Visualizing the Past: Portugal has a very rich story. How was the life of our Kings and Queens? Who conquered more territory? How did we fare in various wars? Who was our greatest enemy? How is our family tree related to the rest of Europe? 
  • Classrooms at Técnico: You're living it... Crowded rooms, the inability to open new schedules. The answer is always the same: there are no available rooms. But... aren't there? The FenixAPI gives you access to schedule information, and to the number of enrolled students in a class. May there are big inefficiencies in the system? Classes of 15 students in rooms for 60 and classes with 40 in a room for 20? Let's visualize it!
  • The economics of EVE Online: Are you an avid player of this MMORPG(*) or haven't heard about it before?  In any case, this is an extraordinary topic for exploration in this course. Create a visualization that illustrates the evolution of EVE's economy. Allow users to analyze the impact both of their action and catastrophic events.
    (*) massively multiplayer online role-playing game