show episodes
 
Helping you become a more effective information designer. You want to create effective data visualizations. That’s hard work. There are so many decisions to make, like chart type, annotations, and color! Will this podcast help? Host and fellow data viz designer Alli Torban is in the trenches with you. She shares the latest tools and methods that she’s discovered while on the job and interviewing top designers. If you’re an analyst, journalist, or designer who wants to hone your skills with s ...
 
Conversations about curiosity in work and life. Broadcasting weekly on WERA-LP 96.7 FM, streaming at wera.fm Choose to be Curious is a show all about curiosity. We explore how curiosity contributes to everything from education and innovation to leadership and conflict resolution. S. Leonard Rubenstein, a writer and teacher, once described curiosity as “a willing, a proud, an eager confession of ignorance” – and that’s what I’m going for. We have a choice. Like eating well or exercise, we get ...
 
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show series
 
We'll only ever get one body, change tho' it may with time. Can we get to know our bodies better? What's going on, why, and how we might work with what we've got? Personal trainer and founder of The Line Method Eva Meier joins me for a conversation about putting curiosity to work for our bodies, and for ourselves.Theme music by Sean Balick. “Are We…
 
I walk you through my process for creating a data viz brief and how to use it! If you're interested in a short training and getting a copy of the data viz brief template that I use with my clients, shoot me an email with the subject line "INTERESTED!" and if there's enough interest, I'll host a live training! hello@allitorban.com…
 
Arlington County Sustainability Planner Helen Reinecke-Wilt joins me to explore how choosing to be curious about our environmental impact helps Arlington achieve its goal of carbon neutrality. Might curiosity literally save the world?Theme music by Sean Balick. “A Certain Lightness” by Migration via Blue Dot Sessions.…
 
Curiosity theories abound. How might curiosity contribute to their growth and attractiveness -- or/and how might it be an antidote? What happens when genuine curiosity is applied to these theories? Political scientist and University of Chicago professor Eric Oliver joins me to explore what happens when curiosity goes down the rabbit hole.Theme musi…
 
The wise and wonderful healthcare advocate and equity champion Nicole Rochester, MD, founder and CEO of Your GPS Doc LLC, returns for a conversation about what the last two years have done to how curiosity shows up in medicine -- and society at large.Theme music by Sean Balick. “Rabbit Hole" by Love & Weasel via Blue Dot Sessions.…
 
When you’re kicking off a data viz project, do you have a series of questions that you ask to uncover the goals, audience, and data? Want to know how to kick it up a notch? I know I do! Recently, I had the pleasure of working with Liz Hatherley, whose whole expertise is wrapped up in pulling this kind of information out of her clients, which has le…
 
Information design consultant Alli Torban believes visuals can help anyone understand anything. Data visualization has undergone a seismic transformation in recent years. What role does curiosity play in how we collect, present and absorb information? A morsel: "As a general rule of thumb, if I have a strong emotional response to a chart, I’m going…
 
Psychologist Todd Kashdan wrote his new book The Art of Insubordination to "elevate the value of curiosity, intellectual humility, and courage in public discourse, and to teach people how to amplify their voices and help others do the same."Todd is intent on cultivating principled insubordination and pushing back against incuriosity. I figured we s…
 
Research suggests that journalism focused on solutions outperforms problem-focused news. "Solutions Journalism" feels more interesting, trustworthy, uplifting -- and inspires people to get involved. Marie von Hafften of the Solutions Journalism Network joins me to explore the role of curiosity and all-important trust in finding and telling those st…
 
This started as a conversation about how curiosity shows up in mental health, but New Delhi-based independent journalist Tanmoy took us to post-colonialism property ownership, sussing out the boundaries of allowable questioning, our bias toward answers, and what we can learn from our kids. Sanity, through a whole new set of lenses.Theme music by Se…
 
Join the Elevate Membership Program! I invited a few of the best dataviz designers and freelancers I know on the show today (Duncan Geere, Gabrielle Merite, and Will Chase) and we absolutely stuffed the hour with as many dataviz freelancing tips as we possibly could! In this episode, we demystify the whole process: starting from when someone emails…
 
Arlington County's restorative justice efforts strive for an equitable, empathetic community that honors the dignity and humanity of all people and creates pathways for belonging, healing, accountability, and growth. Restorative Arlington coordinator Kimiko Lighty explains how central curiosity is to the work.Theme music by Sean Balick. “Turning on…
 
Today I’m calling out the biggest things I learned in the past year. There’s just something about naming it that helps me remember to keep doing it in the new year and even how I can take it up a notch in the next year. In this episode, I’ll highlight the three biggest lessons I learned this year, and they all stem from better communication with cl…
 
"Architecting Curiosity" turns out to be a pretty fabulous way to think about choosing to be curious. It is also a community and school with which to practice and train our natural muscle of inquiry. I decided to enroll.Architecting Curiosity founders, experience designers all, Pim Schachtschabel, Monica Canfield-Lenfest and Anthony Rocco were my m…
 
This week we visit that uncomfortable place that curiosity can create as we wrestle with the courage of our questions. Social justice music-maker Crys Matthews illuminates the power of music to open hard conversations. And, oh, what a voice!"Exactly Where You Are" used with permission of artist.By Lynn Borton
 
Have you ever reimagined your tabular data set as a network and discovered new insights? Networks are an obvious choice if you’re visualizing someone’s social network, for example, but there are so many more possibilities! In this episode, Dr. Keita Broadwater will explain what a network is, share a couple of examples of tabular data reimagined as …
 
Community engagement is a critical piece of our democracy puzzle -- a piece Dulce Carrillo, Supervisor of Public Engagement for Arlington Public Schools, is eager to help put into place. Curiosity in service of finding and asking the right questions!Theme music by Sean Balick; “Town Market” from Onesuch Village, via Blue Dot Sessions.…
 
Do horror movies serve a purpose? Where do you draw the line between revulsion and wanting to know more? These are the questions that drive the research of Coltan Scrivner, Ph.D. student in the Department of Comparative Human Development and a Fellow at the Institute for Mind and Biology at the University of Chicago. Just in time for Halloween, but…
 
How do we future-proof our data viz careers? What skills are important now and 10 years from now as software companies come and go and $5 dashboards pop up on Fiverr? In this episode, Dr. Jonathan Schwabish and I talk about what our consultant work looks like right now and how we’re working to future-proof our careers. This is a joint podcast betwe…
 
To be “sober curious” is to reassess one’s relationship with alcohol. It’s part mindfulness, part overall attention to well-being, part solidarity in a frank re-examination and redefinition of how we socialize and celebrate in this country. I was so pleased to have Laura Silverman, founder of Booze Free in DC, Zero Proof Nation, & The Sobriety Coll…
 
Have you written off 3D as a big no-no? Not yet! In this episode, Dr. Tyler Morgan-Wall shares his latest innovations and impactful use cases of his Rayshader package in R. Take a listen and be amazed at the samples in the show notes! (you can use Rayshader and R for free!) https://dataviztoday.com/shownotes/67…
 
What is it about defying our own expectations that we find so irresistible? Close-up magician Mitch Praver thinks with me about how curiosity and magic intersect. From infants' understanding of object permanence to our own delight with what seems impossible, this is magic through a news lens.Theme music by Sean Balick; “We Build with Rubber Bands” …
 
Have you ever looked at a work of art and suddenly felt an extraordinary epiphany? Felt something kick in, come together, split open – finally make sense in a way it never had before? There is something about the creativity of others interpreting the world around us that helps each of us, all of us, see things differently.Artist Rebecca Kamen explo…
 
Have you heard of data sonification? It’s the process of turning data into sound, and there's a novel podcast out now called Loud Numbers where Duncan Geere and Miriam Quick introduce a data story, explain how they sonified it, and then play the sonification they've created. In this episode, we discover how they created their podcast, what’s the be…
 
How on earth to mark the 150th episode of this curiosity adventure? With this delightful, surprising, fresh exploration of one man's commitment to centering curiosity in -- you guessed it -- work and life. I am indebted to John Green. What do curiosity, pedagogy, conflict resolution and hair cutting have in common? You tell me...Theme music by Sean…
 
I’ll be forever grateful to Virginia Humanities for helping me find my way to artist, writer and educator Sushmita Mazumdar and her Studio PAUSE, an inviting place that provides time and space for Arlingtonians to explore creativity and celebrate community. It is, in my mind, a most marvelous curiosity enterprise.Theme music by Sean Balick. “A Burs…
 
I suppose it was only a matter of time before I would turn my curiosity lens on community media itself, the very source of this show. Antoine Haywood, practitioner and doctoral student at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, is the perfect companion for this celebration of connecting people, participatory media-…
 
It’s easy to think you have to be the master at D3 and also have the design eye of an artist in order to have a fulfilling data viz career, but that has not been my experience, nor the experience of my guest today Amanda Makulec who is the Data Visualization Society’s Executive Director. She’s heard her fair share of data viz origin stories, frustr…
 
Most of our ideas about leadership are woefully inadequate for the world as we now know it. In his new book Rebel Leadership: How to Thrive in Uncertain Times, innovation advisor Larry Robertson helps us rethink what's needed in our "new abnormal" -- including how cultures of inquiry and curiosity contribute to our collective success. Such a timely…
 
What if we were to leave learning up to curiosity? Although that's not the language used, the Montessori Method is built on children's own exploration and discovery. Education consultant Chandra Fernando joins me for a delightful conversation about curiosity, Maria Montessori, absorbent minds, failure and peace.Theme and other music by Sean Balick.…
 
Have you ever felt a burning desire to know what might have been, had you chosen a different course of action? That's "counterfactual curiosity" -- the desire to know about possible alternative outcomes -- and it can sometimes cause us pain and regret. So why have it? Dr. Lily FitzGibbon, postdoctoral research fellow at the School of Psychology and…
 
How might curiosity contribute to building peace? Alp Özerdem, dean of the Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University, joins me in exploring what happens when we approach conflict with curiosity and a commitment to transformation. It's hard to beat his closing affirmation, "After this, curiosity will be the backbone …
 
What can we do to make our data visualizations more accessible to more people, especially those with disabilities? In this episode, Frank Elavsky shares how we can integrate accessibility into our current data visualization workflow. It’s a skill just like anything else, so let’s get practicing! Show notes: https://dataviztoday.com/shownotes/63…
 
Some time ago I was at a STEM event for middle schoolers, talking about curiosity -- in particular their curiosity about death. That got me thinking: how does curiosity show up around death? Doula by Destiny founder Valoria Walker joins me to explore how choosing to be curious about death might help us acclimate to the inevitable -- and how compass…
 
Maybe you think of yourself as curious, maybe you don't. How might you know? Stefaan van Hooydonk, founder of Global Curiosity Institute, offers curiosity diagnoses for people and organizations alike. His goal is to help others foster a curiosity mindset, in hopes of inspiring discovery and innovation.Theme music by Sean Balick;“Reflectors” by Ray …
 
James Baldwin wrote, “The world changes according to the way people see it, and if you can alter even by a millimeter, the way people look at reality, then you can change the world.” Changing the world is exactly what sociologist Jason Radford is trying to do. Through his leadership at Volunteer Science and Northeastern University's Social Design L…
 
Ah, money. The topic everyone wants to hear about but no one wants to talk about! It’s a complicated and nuanced subject because there are so many variables that factor into someone’s compensation, but... In this episode, I’ll share some highlights from the responses in the Data Visualization Society community survey to give you a sense of what dat…
 
I was inspired to create a show about the new Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge when I moved to a condo and gained a distant view of some very cool arches. My curiosity piqued, I wanted to know more. It turns out, Engineer and Program Manager Dennis Howland has helped build more than a bridge. This conversation is a testament to the power of curio…
 
Watching the multi-colored wonder of sunrise, an idea dawned: what would a conversation about curiosity and color reveal? Artist and teacher Bryan Jernigan seemed the perfect person to ask. Proof that asking surprising questions will always yield good conversation...Thanks to Sean Balick for our theme music. "A Minor Etude" by Blue Nocturnal and "C…
 
What are the ingredients of a successful personal project? How do you even know what topic to make your personal project about? What constraints make for a successful personal project? In this episode, data visualization designers Nadieh Bremer and Shirley Wu share insights they learned from completing a year-long collaboration that ended with a ne…
 
Do you feel lost when you’re creating a chart? Are you feeling around in the dark with every new project? Confidence comes with practice, but you can also take a few smart steps, in the beginning, to create an effective chart. I’ve interviewed top designers for years on my podcast while creating and experimenting on my own, and I’ve found that thes…
 
Alison Horstmeyer, Ph.D. is a talent development facilitator, executive coach, and humanistic researcher with particular interest in workplace curiosity. Her research on curiosity in a VUCA world [volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous] drew me to her -- and her real-world workplace experience on how this all plays out kept me with her. I think…
 
The last episode of the year! In this episode, I have a little data viz tennis match with fellow podcaster Lea Pica. We found the most inspiring visualizations in four categories: climate change, COVID-19, racial injustice, and the US presidential election. Lea and I bounce back and forth describing our favorite in each category and the mastery on …
 
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