Manuel Lima hosted a free online panel with Michale Friendly and Sandra Rendgen historical data visualization. It already happened, but you can listen to the archived version:

Human beings have been involved in the visual representation of information for thousands of years. While some books on Data Visualization go as far back as the 18th century, to what’s considered to be the golden age of information graphics, the history of the practice is much deeper. The participants on this panel have spent years exploring key characters and major contributions to the field of Data Visualization over many centuries. We will be discussing ancient visual metaphors, the challenges of doing research in this area, what we can learn from the past, and many other topics.

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Nathan Yau
http://flowingdata.com

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