22 August 2008

a day of Edward Tufte.

well i managed to make it to the all day course, "presenting data and information" on wednesday and i can't stop thinking about all the simple, yet complicated theories mr. tufte (pronounced TUFF TEE) rattled off. even though it was hard to cough up the fee since "my employer" doesn't pay for these things anymore, i still enjoyed every minute of it. having a "student ID" saved me $180 and i continue not to regret that i am my own employer.

beyond that, i was accompanied by the famous alex "ajax" jackson. we got there pretty much the minute it started and found ourselves walking into a packed ballroom. fortunately we found two seats next to each other, in the front row! i was fascinated with everything – from 10am, when i received my four free edward tufte books, to the minute we got into the 45-minute-parking-structure-exit at 4:30pm. it was hard to label the crowd taking this course. mostly looked like sales people or middle-management of some sort. i noticed some people didn't blink to tufte's wisdom, while others allowed their ego to roll their eyes into a hollow head. all in all, i physically felt out of place amongst the dress shirts as i wore my shorts and slippers but was totally engaged mentally.

i took seven and a half pages of notes in my handy 2008 journal.

tufte managed to continually bag on PC users and microsoft — powerpoint, in particular — which was to my great delight. and he has a fairly crass attitude in general with the occasional self-indulged joke, but who can argue with the man, he's a genius. he explained 6 major principles of analytical design from his book, Beautiful Evidence (pg. 124), that are the highlights in my notes and are clearly something that i will take away and utilize as i pursue this glamorous (twisted) field of graphic design. he starts the chapter off with the ingenious and gorgeous map that Minard created to communicate napoleon's invasion on russia.

ajax and i each got one of our books signed.
here he is waiting patiently to have a question answered.

and here he is trying to grab Tufte's wrist watch. shady, i tell you. :)

i'm excited to dive into my new books including a book his mother wrote, "artful sentences: syntax as style."

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