MAS 961 portraying the individual


brilliant Portraiture chapter 2

bruce and young In the Eye of the Beholder chapter 6


With this week's assignment, you will begin working on your final project. Here, you will develop your ideas for the representation of individuals in the schema you are designing.

1. Read the chapter in Portraiture. It addresses the questions of purpose and control in the creation of the representation of a person. The subject, the artist, and the audience each have different goals with which they approach the portrait, and the balance that is achieved among them shapes the portrait. How does this tension play out in the visualization of people in an online forum? Who is the audience - and what are their goals? Who are the subjects - and their goals? Who is the artist...? How might different system designs change the balance among these entities? For instance, what if participants in the forum could modify their own representations? What if they could modify that of other people? Write a short discussion of these issues and post it online. Please include a description of how your visualization balances subject, artist, and audience.

2. Read the Bruce and Young chapter. Think about the social signals we are accustomed to seeing and interpreting via faces. What would you want to include in some form in your visualization? In a face or face-like form or translated into an abstracted form?

3. Design the representation of individual people for your final project. What are the rules by which these representations are generated from the data? Write a description of these rules. Sketch several different individuals as they would appear using your design rules.

This assignment is due Sunday Please submit your work online. If you have any problems with doing so, send email to Andrew Fiore


Some of you are interested in agent based systems. Here are some useful readings:

Gilbert and Troitzsch. Simulation for the Social Scientist (draft online). chapters on "cellular automata" and "multiagent models"

Craig Reynold's page about Boids and related topics is an excellent reference to graphical crowd simulations.