Graphic Design

Using Twitter for Art & Data Visualization - #TwitterRockThyWebsite


Jason Clark
Jason Clark

on 1/29/2013

Today we launch the website for the joint Actors Theatre of Louisville / University of Louisville project Sleep Rock Thy Brain.

From the website:
Sleep Rock Thy Brain, a play […] commissioned by Actors Theatre of Louisville, is slated to premiere during the 37th Annual Humana Festival of New American Plays. Each playwright created a one-act play based on sleep science and flight after working with UofL doctors in the sleep lab to learn more about the science of sleep. Following the premiere of this play in the Humana Festival this spring, the UofL Theatre Arts Department will mount an immediate second production as part of its main stage season in the spring.

Art, Technology and Research

The team producing the event approached VIA Studio to develop a website to not only promote the production, but to support the research project by giving a place to house the sleep stories that people are sharing.

We went one step further and, using Twitter’s API created a website that pulls in Tweets that include both the words “sleep” and “dream”. This creates an ever-changing cloud of thoughts from around the world. Watching it run on the site is mezmerizing.

On top of that, anyone posting about the project with the hashtag #SleepRockThyBrain will see their Tweet show up in a larger, bright orange font above the ever-changing word cloud. These specific Tweets are also being saved in a WordPress plugin that we developed specifically for this project. We may open-source that in the near future.

Give it a try. Go to the website and send a Tweet with the hashtag #SleepRockThyBrain. You can also read more about the project, listen to stories about sleep and dreaming, and submit your own sleep story.


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