A Brief Intro
Using Quantum4D is pretty simple. Using controls like those on your web browser you can navigate through multiple nested spaces representing layers of the economy and markets and toggle between different pre-configured and user-generated lenses (ways of seeing data) these.
You can search for or create new objects and place them into spaces, map variables, select time frames and, with a few clicks, and then press ‘Play' to see animations of variability that were previously buried in endless rows and columns of digits. Zoom in, fly around, and slide back and forth in time frame by frame.
Start with simple 3D versions of today's charts and dynamic 3D scatter plots. Add color, size, and spin and you'll have unmediated access to a ‘visual regression analysis' showing how trends in six different time series are behaving across tens or hundreds of concerns in the same screen space previously taken up by one chart.
As you gain familiarity with the additional degrees of freedom (dimensions) that Quantum4D offers, you'll start to explore spaces with more sophisticated representations of companies and the economy.
New Interface Concepts
Space is the basic context for a view. You can put these inside of objects much the same way you can put a file inside a folder. You can organize multiple spaces in such a way that you can capture taxonomy and other nested positions of group summaries and their parts. Once you've distributed objects in sub-spaces, try opening those up into an upper (parent) space and adding scale to your perception of data dynamics.
Once you've mapped your variables, press the 'Play' button and see what your dynamics look like. Try toggling between different attributes. Stop, pause, and scroll through time to compare nuances in behavior. Start with simple one variable Y charts and soon you'll find yourself animating multi-dimensional network topologies and intuitively understanding the dynamics leveraging your eye's natural ability to recognize patterns.
A lens is a way to seeing something(s). Drag and drop stuff into a space and choose from a number of pre-made ways of seeing it. You can also create and share you own ways of seeing data. Map variables to lenses such as color, size, spin, or position variables (X, Y, Z), or network forces (e.g. attraction and repulsion). These basic mapping features allow a great variety of combinations, many of which you'll find accessible with one click through the Lens toolbar on the upper right.
Objects serve as the basic building blocks of a view. You can copy and paste objects into a new space to create new views. The system will remember which spaces you've used them in and allow you to toggle between them by using the object as a pivot point of insight between ways of viewing created by you and other users. They are placeholders corresponding to, for example, a country, market, industry, company, financial instrument, individual, or place. It is populated with data “about” the chosen object (e.g. for a country object such as Canada, there might be data for GDP growth per year or population size). Objects are represented as models (spheres, flags, factories, etc.) in the space that moves when animated.
Relations connect two objects as a line in the 3D space to indicate a relation between the two objects; maps relations between entities (correlation, covariance, foreign exchange rates, industry exports/imports, etc.). Data associated with the relations between objects can be assigned to these relations.
The available data, essential to building a view to show insight. Each time series is called an attribute. These attributes are placed on objects or relations that represent 'entities' (markets, countries, companies, people etc.) in your world and connections between them.