I'm a visual storyteller & data visualization software engineer.
My passion for data visualization has led me to visualizing & presenting economic data for US Government officials, uncover the visual formula of one of the internet's most influential video journalists, & help spearhead a cutting-edge data analytics platform from inception to the startup's eventual acquisition.
Oh, right! I do...
After the better part of a decade at the bleeding edge of data analytics, I'm convinced my field is yet to realize its potential for positive impact.
We in Silicon Valley claimed that the age of "Big Data" would deliver deep insights for making the world a better place. In practice, it has largely focused us on symptoms, short-term control, & reinforcing our existing beliefs. At worst, it's been a tool for widening systemic inequity.
But this shouldn't surprise us: the media we use & the mindsets we apply to data focus us on symptoms, not underlying causes. Our tools let us watch trend lines go up & down. Our paradigms tell us to try to control the lines.
In response, I'm on a mission to create new digital media that bring into focus the complex systems at the heart of humanity's biggest challenges -- rather than the symptoms they create. I want to help shift the paradigm of how we use data from trying to control outcomes to creating the conditions for flourishing.
I'm still early on this journey, but if the vision interests you, checkout this manifesto on the need for systems-oriented media, or this short talk I gave at EYEO Festival on moving from "dataviz" to "systemviz".
Check out some of my work below!
When should I stop watching a TV series?
As a fun project within our larger engineering work, my team & I build a tool exploring when TV series rise & fall in quality.
The tool helped drive customers to our product, & I had a blast building responsive, custom charts with engaging interactions & animations.
How do you deliver economic insights and opportunities to those who need it most?
As the lead software engineer at the Center on Rural Innovation, I've helped create a first-of-its-kind data and mapping platform to help democratize rural economic data.
With a focus on enabling data-driven storytelling, I use code and human-centered design to iterate our product: from font-end architecture, to interactive datavis, to conducting user research and testing.
I've had the chance to help present our platform at the National Governor's Association conference, for the US Department of Health & Human Services, and at Mastercard's Global Summit for Inclusive Growth.
As a founding member of the newspaper's datavis team, I helped lead an investigative article into Stanford's sexual assault judicial process.
We interviewed and gathered info from local law enforcement, university administrators, and students. As we worked, I iteratively prototyped numerous visualizations: from guided walk-throughs to timelines to flow-charts.
Click to see some of a final report of the data & findings.
The field of Positive Psychology has produced astounding insights into mental health, wellness, and happiness, but its diverse methods and focuses make it difficult to understand holistically.
I worked with mental health professionals, researchers, and educators to create a tool which allows practitioners to understand the growth and connection between the 19 most influential researchers in Positive Psychology.
I used web-scraping, SemanticScholar's API, and D3 to create this early prototype. I'm currently collaborating with psychologists at Dartmouth to expand the tool to millions of scientific papers using neo4j.
Click to see the in-progress prototype.
What tools and production insights might small, ethically-minded businesses need to expand their reach?
As a core engineer at a small startup, I built and iterated on web and mobile platforms for exactly these sorts of businesses, coding heavily in SQL, Django, React, and React-Native.
I got to conduct interviews, build APIs from scratch, and analyze messy data -- whatever it took to bring features from idea to deployment on factory floors.
After conducting social-network analysis research at Stanford, I was curious: How can we better understand and communicate change in dynamic networks?
For example, how might a person's social network change over time? Or, how do new academic fields emerge?
Somewhat surprisingly, coding this in the industry-standard D3.js is really challenging, requiring hundreds of lines of code.
I addressed this by creating an npm package which abstracts away the complex code, allowing you to visualize dynamic networks with a single line of code.