- Ideas, tools, best practices about visual storytelling with corporate data - Ideas, tools, best practices about data storytelling

Microsoft Research prototype: Draw your graphics on a touch screen and create your datavis in real time

Posted on Friday, March 22nd 2013

Microsoft just released an amazing video showing a prototype mixing data visualization and storytelling.
"SketchInsight is an interactive whiteboard system for storytelling with data by using real-time sketching. Creating personalized, expressive data charts becomes quick and easy. The presenter simply sketches an example, and SketchInsight automatically completes the chart by synthesizing from example sketches", explain Microsoft in the video posted on YouTube

This presentation is sequenced in two parts.
The first one is a demonstration of how you can draw graphics on a large sensitive screen.

The software translates these drawings into graphics. Data are retrieved from the database, and the computer seems to “understand” what the user want to draw. Interesting ideas that could improve the collaborative decision process in a meeting room! Instead of sitting in chairs with one member of the team using the computer/keyboard/mouse, everybody can stand up in front of the screen, touch it, show things and collaborate.
But nothing is said about where data are stored, how they must be organized and prepared.

The second part of the video shows the same tool used in a storytelling/presentation mode. Replacing the traditional PowerPoint you can directly create your story on the screen, facing your audience. Your drawings are interpreted by the software and combined with data.

Presented by Microsoft Research, this tool will certainly never be released as a commercial tool. But, it shows that Microsoft is working in the data storytelling direction too. Combination of theses concepts with PowerView and other existing tools could be a preview of a great 2014 data storytelling solution.

(Thanks to Abed Ajraou for discovering this video)

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