Power of Visualization

I had a chance to experience a very busy day at the first day of the conference. Among all the great presentations, IFORS Distinguished Lecture was the one that impressed me the most.

IFORS Distinguished Lecture was given by Rolf H. Mohring of Beijing Institute for Scientific and Engineering Computing. The talk was about optimization of Kiel Canal in general. As far as I remember, they are interested in various parts of the Kiel Canal. The canal is the world’s busiest artificial waterway where big carriers needs to be scheduled so that bi-directional traffic can be as effective as possible. If you combine this problem with the optimal scheduling and routing of leads, then you get a very difficult and complex problem.

Despite the complexity of the topic for me, it was one of the best talks I’ve seen so far in terms of visualization aspects. Mohring started his presentation with beautiful photos from Kiel Canal, which is a great hook for audience. He also shared some photos from the canal which made it very clear for everyone to understand the role of leads. Mohring showed us a visually appealing animation after presenting their solution. Many people brought their phones here:

I especially enjoyed the time-space diagrams to show flow of leads:

Overall, this presentation reminded me the power of the visualization. I suggest everyone to spend some extra time to insert visual aspects to their presentations. It makes difficult to grasp subjects very trivial, and also converts your presentation into a memorable one.