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Evidence-based Science Communication and Cinematic Scientific Visualization
DescriptionScientific visualization for public education serves a vital role in our modern society. The ACM SIGGRAPH community has brought artists and academics together for decades, and now has the unique capacity to engage public audiences by cutting through the noise with meaningful scientifically-based imagery tailored to maximize learning impact. The Advanced Visualization Lab at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications has decades of experience in creating high-quality cinematic scientific visualizations for public outreach. The team works with scientists, film producers, and education experts to create virtual tours through data collected from astronomers, geologists, biologists, and other scientific domains for high-resolution immersive screens. Films that contextualize cutting-edge computational research with a narrative and innovative visual effects help audiences build a foundational, up-to-date understanding of complex science concepts. This course will explore the process of creating cinematic scientific visualizations with scientific and visual effects tools for public audiences, grounded in the science of science communication. We explain challenges with representing data in a seemingly objective context while making it approachable, beautiful, and compelling to experts and non-experts. We briefly explain how artists can leverage tools from the computational science communities and the necessity of building custom data translation software. And we will clarify why cinematic scientific visualization can be an appealing and effective format for achieving informal science learning objectives.