#API(3), #DataVisualization(2), #JSON, #Interesting, #SpookyStuff, #Dope, #Challenging, #fun, #SelfTracking, #Humanistic, #GraduateStudents, #data, #DataObfuscation, #deep


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There are more "free" applications and services than ever before that help us to quantify and track what we do, when, how, and with whom. The quantified self holds the promise of improving our lives, but there is an ambivalence to how these technologies are affecting our lives. This course - Quant Humanists: The "I" in API - examined, questioned, and critiqued the perspectives of personal data and "the quantified self" from multiple perspectives. We explored these perspectives by working with the tools and methodologies for collecting personal data and generating visuals and other tangible output from these data. This is a page highlighting some of the course outcomes.

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Student interests

interactive media arts(2), design(2), tech(2), ui (2), disability, sports, nurtition, video games, code, mood disorders, mapping, 1.5korean, business, culture, ethnography, media, post-strucuralism, newsfeed-sharing, ux, memory, front-end dev.

Course highlights

Introduction to many topics & projects related to self-tracking (4), thinking about big data and personal data (2), project inspiration, exposing privacy concerns, intro to style guides, intellectually stimulating, examining current issues.

Guest Speakers

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New perspectives

On April 2nd, 2018 the Quant Humanists Course visited Jason Bobe and Ryan Viglizzo to chat about the Resilience Project. We learned about the process of finding “Genetic Superheroes” and the team’s efforts in redesigning the patient-consent process for biomedical research studies.

We had a total of 5 external guest speakers participate in our class this year. We met Lauren McCarthy, Brian Bot, Daniel Goddemeyer, Jason Bobe, and Ryan Viglizzo. We also had Daniel Shiffman and Markus Kreutzer as guest reviewers at our final project presentations.


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Curated references

Each week we prepared 3 categories of materials for students to reference - practice, readings, and additional resources. In total we had 122 resources. We had a supplmental reference for materials which included 9 books, 12 Papers, 20 Articles, and 7 Talks which were part of the Course Materials.


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Learning through making

Students engaged in weekly project based work that spoke to the topic discussed that week. We learned that in future iterations of the course it might be beneficial to assign the same data to be tracked and allow for more freedom in the visualization/manifestation of the data rather than allowing students to have to decide on both the data to be tracked and the visualization type. Students also wrote about their experiences tracking each week in an assigned blog post.