Innovation Clock

Visualizing a neighborhood's pulse of innovation through live social media conversations.

The Innovation Clock is a data powered artwork that uses LED lights to visualize unfolding stories of innovation in Kendall Square, Cambridge. The piece uses language analysis algorithms to perpetually listen for Twitter conversations about innovation, and translates them into animated patterns of light at three distinct architectural scales and resolutions.

At the largest scale, a grid of colored spotlights on the building facade forms a scintillating map of activity in the conversation over the last 24 hours.        

At a more human scale, visitors are greeted by an eight foot tall illuminated monolith in the lobby of the building. On its outer face is a grid of colored LED lights, echoing the facade, representing the conversation over the last hour. On its inner face is a high resolution LED display surface showing excerpts from the conversation. Emerging themes and relevant Tweets are revealed through dynamic typographic animations. 

A synchronous sequence of animations is triggered across the three displays when a new Tweet enters the system, and at the top of each hour. The interconnected surfaces of the artwork transform the building into a timepiece that reflects the conversation about innovation in and beyond Kendall Square.

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BioMed Realty Trust


Design Communications, Ltd.


Creative Direction

Design & User Experience

Data Visualization

Data Analytics

Software Development

Fabrication & Install

Project Management

Natural language processing pulls relevant content from unstructured data.

Architectural lighting summarizes the day's activity.

The automated system continuously collects and curates fresh content with no maintenance.

CSIS Data Chandelier

Celebrating the work of an important think tank through data and light.