You may have noticed that Pinterest has taken on new prominence here at Noise to Signal Global Headquarters in the past few weeks. There’s a good functional reason for that, as a quick look at the number of people who’ve been pinning my more recent cartoons can show you.
And there’s also a certain giddiness I feel when I see visual communication moving so firmly to the fore. I think – hope – we’re on the verge of a new age of visualization, where more and more of us are able to use everything from doodles to sophisticated rendering to explain, argue, persuade, imagine and entertain.
Sure, it’s being preceded by a wave of flotsam – not the least of which is the flood of mediocre-to-awful infographics that turn out to be neither. (I actually saw one today that has no graphics. It’s a table, filled with words. But it’s in bright text on a dark background, and there are many blocks of color, so it must be an infographic – and therefore a PNG file. It’s hard to imagine a more gratuitous screw-you to the visually impaired… not to mention to search engines everywhere.)
But I have every hope we’re soon going to see a new wave – tools large and small, shared expertise and an explosion of ideas and applications for images. Pinterest is just the pin-pointy tip of a very visual iceberg.