From Otto Neurath’s Isotype to Multiple Worlds of Visual Media

Karl H. Müller, Armin Reautschnig


The talk will be focused on four main parts. First, a short summary will be presented on Otto Neurath’s visualization system, its grammar and its comparative advantages. Second, it will be shown that Otto Neurath’s arguments for the relevance of visualization are still valid and that visualization offers a powerful tool for analysis in the social and in the natural sciences. Third, the presentation will be concentrated on a special research segment, namely on comparative social research across Europe. For this area, numerous restrictions become relevant so that visualization in Otto Neurath’s form cannot be undertaken. Thus, the fourth and final part of the presentation will show a new online program under the name of WISDOMIZE which has been developed over the last two years and which allows the production of visual patterns which can be used for comparative analysis. The talk will show a small number of visual examples and will discuss the relevance of this type of visualization for contemporary comparative research.


20th century philosophy; history of philosophy; philosophy; Wittgenstein Ludwig; information; isotype; media theory; Hilbert David; science; visualization

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