Grand Challenges and Opportunistic Visualizations

Lecture / Panel
For NYU Community

Speaker: Georges Grinstein, University of Massachussetts at Lowell


Visualization, Information Visualization and Visual Analytics share the same pipeline, basically taking data and producing images on displays. There are some minor differences but all in all they are quite similar. All three have very similar Grand Challenges (scalability, developing a theory, computing the best presentation).  I have spoken on such and other grand challenges in each of these areas over the last 20 years, identifying what wicked problems really need to be addressed, what big problems would have tremendous impact, and, of course, I am ready to do so again. But progress on these has been quite slow and technology is moving so much more rapidly than anticipated.

In this talk I will identify likely future technologies, technologies that are right around the corner, technologies that will be in need of visualization, for which no good visualizations are currently available. This is an opportunity for visualization, not a grand challenge for visualization. I will compare these with the past grand challenges but the difference will be clear: grand challenges would have tremendous impact on our visualization field, but in the future, at least two decades from now given our pace;opportunistic visualizations will have tremendous impact within the next decade and great payoff defining new isualizations, new interactions, and new paradigms.


Georges Grinstein is Professor of Computer Science at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, head of its Bioinformatics Program and Director of its Institute for Visualization and Perception Research. He received his Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of Rochester in 1978.

He has over 35 years in academia with extensive consulting, over 250 research grants, products in use nationally and internationally, several patents, numerous publications in journals and conferences, a book on interactive data visualization, founded several companies, been the organizer or chair of national and international conferences and workshops in Computer Graphics, in Visualization, and in Data Mining. He has given numerous keynotes and mentored over 25 doctoral students and hundreds of graduate students. He has been on the editorial boards of several journals in Computer Graphics and Data Mining, a member of ANSI and ISO, a NATO Expert, and a technology consultant for various public agencies and commercial organizations.