Collecting Data – Data Truths

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As I only had the apple watch since my birthday, I had only collected about 3 weeks and a few days worth of data. Furthermore there were some anomaly’s in the data were days I either didn’t wear it or I only wore it for part of the day when I wasn’t moving as much.

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Research – Data Truths

We research into some of the applications on the Apple Watch and iPhone, to see what data is tracked through the Health app, and what some of the parameters that the Apple Watch collects.


Looking into some the stories around the usage of Apple Watch and how others have used it’s data we came across a news article about how the data was used to solve a murder case.


“Data suggesting the suspect was climbing stairs could correlate to him dragging his victim down a riverbank and climbing back up, police said.”

This proved interesting because the data shown on the health app was used to infer a different action entirely, rather than what the data said happened. Which helped form the bases for our idea, that what data accessed and found can either infer different actions, or what we can learn from the missing data rather than the data shown.

Brief – Data Truths

Using the same data, design three web based visualisations. These can be complementary – reinforcing a single narrative – or contradictory – depicting three different narratives.

This project asks you to look at the connectivity of personal data, considering how and why it is personal. Consider the trajectories data takes through networks, devices, and distribution channels. You might use your own data from the networks in which you participate – Twitter, Facebook, Google etc.

For the project we wanted to explore the usage of the Apple Watch as it tracks data like movement, usage, and heart rate. To see what can be found and analysed through this device that is worn everyday.

Problems – Spatial Transitions

A few problems we encountered, was after some days we couldn’t get the initial batch to grow, either due to not collection enough germs, to not being the correct conditions to grow etc. We then retested and did another batch to see if this would be successful than its predecessors.

Issues with the UV light was that in the room we couldn’t detect any surfaces that had an clear traces of germs, rather it only highlighted dust, and bumps and grooves in the table. I then did some further research into why we couldn’t see any germs on surfaces;

Surfaces can be inspected with the use of an appropriate ultraviolet. However, is not an accurate indicator of the presence of bacteria. But what it can do is indicate areas where bacteria might be found.

As mentioned before, there are different wavelengths of ultraviolet, another possibility is that the torch I had purchased had a low frequency to only highlight or show the presence of substances rather than clearly identify germs. Further, it could be that the surfaces we tested it was fairly clean when we inspected it and there were no clear germs to distinguish.

UV Light Test

Preparation – Spatial Transitions


After producing our petri dishes, we were given 2 each between the four of us to swab an area of interest that we’d then observe and document, through notes and photos for a period of 5 days.

UV Light:

One of the ways UV or ultraviolet (black) light is different from the light we can see is the way its high frequency affects organisms, such as bacteria and mould, opposite of petri dishes. UV light can disrupt germs at a cellular level, making them unable to reproduce. That’s what makes UV light useful for decontamination.

There are three different wavelengths of UV light: UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C. Only UV-C light, which has the highest frequency, can be used to eliminate bacteria and mould.

I purchased a UV light, so we could go and test it on a wide range of surfaces and areas. For our main area of interest would be the IID course room, as multiple classes are taught there. Another option was checking at the start of the day, then checking after class to see if any changes were found.

Research – Spatial Transitions

We all did some independent research into different illnesses and flu’s, to look at how germs are commonly spread in locations.

I researched into hay fever, or what it’s also known as Allergic Rhinitis which is either seasonal, or year-round.

You’ll experience hay fever symptoms if you have an allergic reaction to pollen.

Pollen is a fine powder released by plants as part of their reproductive cycle. It contains proteins that can cause the nose, eyes, throat and sinuses (small air-filled cavities behind your cheekbones and forehead) to become swollen, irritated and inflamed.

You can have an allergy to:

  • tree pollen, released during spring
  • grass pollen, released during the end of spring and beginning of summer
  • weed pollen, released late autumn

“Hay fever is usually worse between late March and September, especially when it’s warm, humid and windy. This is when the pollen count is at its highest.

Symptoms of hay fever include:

  • sneezing and coughing
  • a runny or blocked nose
  • itchy, red or watery eyes
  • itchy throat, mouth, nose and ears
  • loss of smell
  • pain around your temples and forehead
  • headache
  • earache
  • feeling tired

If you have asthma, you might also:

  • have a tight feeling in your chest
  • be short of breath
  • wheeze and cough

Hay fever will last for weeks or months, unlike a cold, which usually goes away after 1 to 2 weeks.”


Brief – Spatial Transitions

Design an interactive visualisation that demonstrates how objects and bodies move through physical space.

“This project aims to explore the potential for interactive data visualisation to explain and describe the ways personal and machine trajectories through urban space can be manifested. People, animals, vehicles, senses, signals of all kinds leave traces as they move through space. Your visualisation should aim to make these traces evident. Your data can be digital, visual, photographic, sensory…”

We wanted to create a visualisation that focusing on the traces left behind, to show the passing of movement through spaces. Through this concept, we decided to locate our focus on germs, as although we can’t see them, they are ‘traces’ of people and objects.

We decided to create two experiments to help illustrate and demonstrate our findings;

Petri dishes would be use to sample germs through the use of swabbing area of interest to observe and document, the growth of germs.

Through the means of using a UV light to detect these ‘traces’ of where germs might be found, to show the passing of people and objects.

Critique – Music Matching


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During the crit we explained our concept and ideas to the class, giving our reasoning to the changes to the brief and how to shifted to these alterations to produce our visualisation.

We encountered some technical issues when going through the demonstration as it turns out the audio we uploaded was overlapped when we uploaded it so the audio wasn’t correct, furthermore wasn’t the final version during the crit, but overall it was well produced and thorough.

Gif Link