Link, Idee per la television (ideas for television) is a periodical magazine about culture and tv published by Mediaset-RTI. Every issue covers a different theme in its cover story while investigating other issues in the other sections. The first one, product is about contents, tv programs, the ideas. The second, industry deals with economical, technological and market issues of television. The third, sights, the subject widens providing insights on other medias and sectors influenced by television.

DensityDesign + Link

DensityDesign collaborated with Link on its tenth issue, titled “Decode or die. L’infografica applicata alla tv” (“Decode or die. Infographics applied to television”).
The collaboration has been a great chance for DensityDesign to experiment much more than usual with some visualization technique while developing a series of scripts for streamlining the creation of the visualizations. In fact the collaboration started with a very open minded approach and Link granted us an incredible amount of freedom on the visualizations, which is such a rare feature in the publishing world.

Process and Tools

While usually DensityDesign totally takes care of the graphic design of its visualization works, this time the project workflow was quite different. In fact the visual look of the visualization was developed by Pomo and art director Marco Cendron (Zero, Rolling Stones Italia, GQ) which are in charge for Link design too. DensityDesign’s task was taking care of the data provided by Link and find a smart way of visualizing it, with a more than usual degree of experimentation (research labs need some fun too!). In the meantime, as already noted, we used this project as an “excuse” to develop some tools able to make our work much easier and faster.

A script has been developed for each specific infographic in order to automatize a large part of the visualization process. The scripts were mostly developed in Scriptographer, given its perfect integration with Illustrator, while the text analysis of subtitles for Lost dialogues patterns visualization was developed in Flex.

Link 10 generated a great interest on Italian newspapers (Nova IlSole24Ore, La Repubblica) and in the blogosphere by generating reflections on the role of visualization in the comprehension of world phenomena.