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GMIC Recap – Visualizing Data Science

When we first started discussing the concept for our GMIC booth back in January, we agreed that our goal should be showing our existing and potential partners what we do in order provide them with the value they are looking for.

Simply writing down buzzwords that apply to our User Acquisition solutions like “Machine Learning Algorithms” and “Neural Networks” in sequence, in very large font size on the wall didn’t feel like it would do the trick. Then, we understood we have to visualize it.

How Does Science look like?

How do you even approach visualizing algorithms and machine learning? We created a few mockups where we thought a good way to do that might be showing the scale and the speed in which decisions are made while buying media programmatically, by showing a video of code ‘running’ very quickly and emphasizing specific events like bids being placed, impressions being won, and installations being made.

While we felt that this is a decent idea with some merit, we also asked ourselves – is this the first thing people think about when they hear the word science?

Well, it isn’t. When we asked ourselves that question the entire team mentioned chemistry in general or a lab in one way or another, and after asking a few friends and other colleagues, we realized that colorful liquids, smoke, and bubbles are the images people most commonly connotate with science.

After dozens of hours planning, designing, figuring out if these weird ideas are even approved by the event organizers and that everything is safe, we felt (well, kind of) confident that we’ll have an awesome booth.

The End Result

Persona.ly's booth at GMIC, 2018

Eventually, we were able to pull off most of what we planned!

There’s no doubt the highlight was our counter, where we used dry ice mixed with boiling water to generate fumes and bubbles inside large Erlenmeyer flasks, creating a lab atmosphere. Most attendees found it hard to ignore:

We also had a section of the wall dedicated to even more science set pieces: tubes full of colorful bubbling water and random gauges and levers – straight out of Frankenstein’s lab!

And, while it’s not really related to science, we had to have a crane machine – they’re just too much fun:

We also handed out theme-appropriate gifts – test tubes filled with candy with short Chinese Proverbs about the importance of knowledge written on the outside, like ” 学而不思则罔,思而不学则殆。”, meaning “Learning without thought means a labor lost; thought without learning is perilous”:

Persona.ly's booth at GMIC, 2018

The number of attendees that stopped by our booth and asked us what we’re all about was sometimes overwhelming, and we really enjoyed explaining the thought process behind the whole science theme. One thing’s for sure – this guy had a ton of fun:

We had a great GMIC, and we’re already thrilled about planning our booth for the next one. See you next year!

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