• History

    The Center for Data Arts was co-founded by former Nebraskan Senator Robert Kerrey and William Bevington in 2002 as the Parsons Institute for Information Mapping (PIIM). In 2016, incoming director Ben Rubin re-tooled the institute's mission and established its current name.

    2002

    Parsons Institute for Information Mapping (PIIM) Co-founded by former Nebraskan Senator Robert Kerrey and William Bevington PIIM opens its doors and begins its foundational research program.

    2003

    Leveraging early successes of graduate faculty and students PIIM begins exploration of the electoral process with a substantial grant from Peter Lewis to develop the Public Opinion Tool.

    Expanding its programs with a new Geographic Information Systems (GIS) practice PIIM commences its engagements with commercial and government organizations.

    2004

    With several programs completed and a burgeoning GIS/Information Visualization practice PIIM secures its first program with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) to induce innovation into the long history of imagery analysis.

    As PIIM completes its initial research for the NGA — with presentations to the National Academies of Science and numerous publications — it embarks on developing the Geospace and Media Tool (GMT) for the U.S. Congress.

    PIIM begins intensive outreach and establishes deep relationships with its data, service, and engineering partners — laying the foundation for mass collaboration and knowledge exchange with world-class researchers.

    2005

    Successfully delivering cutting-edge prototypes to the U.S. Congress PIIM enhances its portfolio with additional technology and product development work for organizations such as Goldman Sachs and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

    PIIM expands its high profile team with the addition of recognized visualization, usability, and engineering researchers — injecting deep science into its deliverables-focused teams.

    2006

    With continued success delivering prototypes and technologies PIIM begins the end-to-end system integration work for the deployable GMT system. Supported by its partners and its Visualization Driven Rapid Prototyping process PIIM delivers at every milestone.

    PIIM launches its unique Quotes Over Time application and continues to build its research capabilities in social networking, mass media, and visualization engineering.

    2007

    Delivering its GMT system to the U.S. Congress PIIM enjoys a perfect review from its sponsors and recommendations exemplifying its Visualization Driven Rapid Prototyping as a revolutionary time- and cost-saving program methodology.

    PIIM successfully engineers and delivers its Long-term Care and Analysis Tool and the Debate Tracker system and expands its Web 2.0 engineering practice.

    PIIM begins building its Medical Informatics practice with exploratory research into commercial and government Electronic Medical Record systems.

    2008

    PIIM receives funding to advance governmental Electronic Medical Records systems and expands its Medical Informatics practice. Work begins on developing PIIM's core EMR technologies and modules.

    2009

    PIIM initiates new programs with the Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center (TATRC), Columbia University, the United Nations, and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Work begins on our Department of Defense Electronic Medical Record project — Leveraging the PIIM Process to Advance Health IT — through a combination of Medical Informatics research, visualization prototyping, and initial engineering studies.

    2010

    Our focus towards our Department of Defense Electronic Medical Record project continues into its second year with a series of approvals and deployments of the novel Graphic User Interface for the Armed Forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application (AHLTA).

    We increase our research efforts into innovative patient and healthcare visualization by publishing "Health Care Service Iconography: Enhancing Medical Record Lucidity Through Intelligent Iconography". Our work for the United Nations and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) continues with successful deployments of those systems. PIIM initiates a new program with the Macmillan Publishers developing a learning management system (LMS).

    2011

    PIIM continues supporting next-generation Electronic Medical Record (EMR) design through three projects related to our Department of Defense Electronic Medical Record initiatives. PIIM is supporting the development of a new EMR prototype to support the Medical Home concept, whereby active-duty personnel can monitor their own medical records and record preventive health measures. Data collected through the system can also be shared with primary care providers. This innovative design allows for individuals to take control of their own health information and interact with it in an intuitive, user-friendly manner. PIIM is also beginning a new redesign effort of EMR interfaces already in place at other military hospitals. PIIM continues to support new commercial work for the Macmillan Publishers, Raytheon and others.

    2012

    PIIM announces the release of our open source next-generation Electronic Medical Record (EMR) presentation layer, HealthBoard. HealthBoard is a step towards supporting a growing body of open source tools and technologies improving the way patients and doctors interact. The PIIM Canonic GUI Model is also released to streamline information between a traditional EMR, web services and a GUI interface. Both are available for download through the Open Source Electronic Health Record Agent (OSEHRA) initiative.

    PIIM partners with the Center for Transformative Media (CTM) at Parsons The New School for Design through funding provided by the Richard Lounsbery Foundation to host The Future of Security: Ethical Hacking, Big Data and the Crowd. PIIM secures funding to investigate novel methods and best practices for visualizing big data through DARPA’s XDATA program. A visiting researcher program begins, and Giorgia Lupi from Politecnico di Milano becomes our inaugural fellow.

    2013

    PIIM continues to support advancements in design for Electronic Medical Records (EMR) in collaboration with OSEHRA. PIIM begins development of a universal, open GUI interface and begins coordinating with the broader open source community to broaden visibility of open source solutions. PIIM develops a novel method for qualitative research visualization and presents the prototype at the 2nd Annual OSEHRA Summit & Workshop. PIIM continues developing mobile application prototypes and begins working with MITRE Corporation, holding a joint-hackathon in August.

    PIIM begins participating in Challenge.gov competitions. In our first competition, PIIM wins 2nd place—Best Medication Section in the VA Health Design Challenge. We later place as a finalist in the AIMS for MHS Innovations (Quadruple AIMS Challenge), and 3rd in the VA Medical Appointment Scheduling Contest as part of the HP Open Community Team. As part of our team’s commitment to building a stronger open source community around healthcare supporting our veterans, the funds are donated to Veterans Service Organizations.

    PIIM continues design support for big data visualization, participating in the first XDATA Summer Workshop and releasing the Data Visualization for Big Data research report, and Expediting Cooperation in Government-funded Open Source Programs: IAM, a new methodology for collaborative, government-funded structures.

    PIIM’s visiting researcher program continues to grow with the addition of Bernd Riedel and Ann Luther.

    2016

    Incoming director Ben Rubin re-tools the institute's mission and renames it the Center for Data Arts. New initiative include the Health Data Design Lab, research into qualitative data visualization techniques, and a public art project that will use sound, light, and real-time data to project a distant glacier’s presence into a public plaza in Calgary, Alberta.

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