Lucid Interactives was born out of the SDR Lab at the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) at Harvard University. Long before Big Data became a buzz word, the SDR Lab was already innovating interactive large data visualizations such as this multi-surface touch-based simulation of climate change and species loss in Thoreau’s Woods, and this touch and tangible voronoi treemap of the Encyclopedia of Life (eol.org).
Between 2010 – 2015, the SDR Lab lead the Life on Earth project, a National Science Foundation-funded (NSF DRL AISL #1010889, $2.3M) multi-institutional project to (1) advance public understanding of biodiversity and the history of life on Earth, and (2) advance our knowledge of how people interact and learn from large interactive science data visualizations on multi-touch tabletop displays in public settings. The project team developed a series of learning activities that can be experienced in multiple museums. The focal exhibit, utilizing large data sets from four online databases including Tree of Life web project, Encyclopedia of Life, National Center for Biotechnology Information and Time Tree, allows visitors to explore the relationships of thousands of species over 3.5 billion years of life on Earth.
Through our years of research and development project efforts, we see a need to help others to design and innovate new paradigms of visualization for learning, education, data analysis, and communication.