The RSA Animate Revolution: Ideas in the age of information overload

3rd Dec 2012; 18:00

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Yoko Ono and Eric Schmidt love them. Teachers and students around the world rave about how they have transformed teaching and learning. They’ve been featured in textbooks, exhibitions and film festivals globally, and have been crowd-translated into countless languages. With many, many millions of views and hundreds of thousands of discussions, comments and subscribers, the RSA Animate series has spread ideas and stimulated conversation around the world.

These simple, originally quite 'lo-fi' videos have completely transformed the way complex information is communicated and shared. They fit into a wider body of work called ‘knowledge visualisation’ which aims to render statistics, ideas, data, and stories in a more accessible, global, memorable and interesting format. We live in an age of information overload, and we seem to nee these techniques now more than ever  But is there any empirical evidence that infographics, 'thematic cartographies' and animations really work? And if so, how?

Renowned psychologist and author Richard Wiseman has conducted an experiment to contrast viewers’ retention of information in animated vs. non-animated videos, and visits the RSA to discuss his findings and their implications with Andrew Park, RSA Animate illustrator and founder of Cognitive Media and Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the RSA.

Panellists: Andrew Park, RSA Animate illustrator and founder of Cognitive Media; Richard Wiseman, author and professor of the public understanding of psychology at the University of Hertfordshire

Chair: Matthew Taylor, chief executive, the RSA.

See what people said on Twitter: #RSAanimate

The audio editing of the RSA Animate under discussion featuring Roman Kraznaric's work was edited by Becca Pyne.

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