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A colorful look at the cellphone signals we never see

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#1 +techbeck

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 13:13

original_large_verge_medium_landscape.jp

 

Invisible signals are all around us, and now we can finally see what we've been missing. Data visualization artist Nickolay Lamm created psychedelic images of the cellphone signals that live in the air, but are invisible to us.

 

At first glance, the visualizations look like tiny mountains illuminated with all the colors of a typical Times Square billboard. But thanks to Danilo Erricolo, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois at Chicago and Fran Harackiewicz, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Southern Illinois University Carbondale who consulted on the project, there's quite a bit of science behind the hilly terrain and color explosion.

 

The landscape is created on a grid of hexagons, with cellular base stations at every corner. Each user within the hexagons has been assigned a different frequency, and when frequencies combine, they create a single color. Different colors are created when channels combine from hexagon to hexagon. Lamm's illustrations show what you would see if you were to take a photo at a single instant over a city like Chicago (above) — rapid changes happening at once to produce an landscape of colors.

 

original-1.jpg


New York, featuring a blanket colors via rooftop transmitters.

 

This isn't the first time Lamm has created detailed visualizations of the invisible things we live around every day: he also visualized a world where you can see Wi-Fi signals. While it's amazing to see as a data visualization, you probably wouldn't want to see these colored lights all day, every day.

 

original-2.jpg

 

Washington The Herbert C. Hoover Building base station in DC.

 

http://www.theverge....s-Nickolay-Lamm




#2 xendrome

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 13:30

Data visualization artist

AKA no scientific method of actually mapping the signals and just what the artist perceives. I am really not impressed, any artist could do this, each time it would look totally different.

 

EDIT: Now that I look at the pictures more, anyone could have made this, just paint rays of light all over the place and pretend cell-towers or BDAs exist in those locations.... the fact that this is getting so much attention pisses me off, because someone could have done a really neat study/mapping story on cell signals in major cities with actual data.... not just random worthless BS.



#3 Tha Bloo Monkee

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 13:43

Reminds me of that ridiculous artist's visualization of computer viruses that they had on the front page years ago.

 

Edit: found it: http://www.neowin.ne...they-look-in-3d



#4 xendrome

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 13:49

Reminds me of that ridiculous artist's visualization of computer viruses that they had on the front page years ago.

 

Edit: found it: http://www.neowin.ne...they-look-in-3d

 

LOL Awesome, same exact thing.... Sad part is people see stories like that who have no knowledge about computers/electronics and think "OMG THAT'S WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE!!#@!@#"



#5 Growled

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 03:54

I wonder if that is what Geordi LaForge on Star Trek sees?



#6 Hum

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 03:55

I see dead people ....



#7 +Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 03:57

I see dead people ....

Reminds me of something I once read

 

I see stupid people, they're everywhere, they walk among us, they don't even know they're stupid.



#8 Atomic Wanderer Chicken

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 03:58

I'd like to see an artist's illustration of gamma rays and x rays next :D



#9 Hum

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 04:01

Reminds me of something I once read

 

I see stupid people, they're everywhere, they walk among us, they don't even know they're stupid.

 

^ Easy to pick those out -- they have a cellphone up to their nose. ;)



#10 The_Decryptor

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 05:11

I prefer these ones, they're accurate at least.



#11 +Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 05:13

I prefer these ones, they're accurate at least.

Wow, that defaulted to where I am, I'm guessing it's supposed to and you're not actually in Wolves UK?



#12 The_Decryptor

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Posted 13 December 2013 - 06:00

Yeah, the site does geolocation, it defaults to Brisbane for me.





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