O’Reilly Radar editor Mac Slocum interviews Ben Fry, co-creator of the programming language Processing and head of Fathom Design, about data visualization.
The conversation touches on many subjects but this was a nice exchange on the democratization of the tools used to create data visualizations.
Q: A point that’s often raised…These tools put in in the hands of the wrong people will spreads misinformation. What’s your take on that?
A: I think it’s kind of funny… The same argument has been made with any technological leap since the beginning of time. Books printed in mass had a similar reaction. The internet came along and everybody could post things on the internet and wouldn’t that be the end of the world… The important thing is to focus on the literacy aspect of it. The more that people are doing the work—it all kind of goes to improve the conversation of what’s good, bad useful and what’s not.