Just What is Informatics?

Airport art installation

As those of you who subscribe to my Facebook page know, I recently decided to leave my job as an IndyStar.com digital producer in order to go back to school full-time. With luck, by the end of 2016, I’ll have a master’s degree in Media Arts & Sciences from the Department of Human-Centered Computing at IUPUI’s School of Informatics and Computing.

After giving me their congratulations, many people’s first question is, “What is informatics?”

Simply put, informatics is the science of information, both in theory and in practice.

“Harnessing the power and possibility of technology, Informatics turns data and information into knowledge that people can use every day,” says the SOIC website’s own definition. That could be through creating 3-D animations, accelerating drug discoveries through computer analysis, developing IT to manage disaster relief or exploring how we humans interact with computers, mobile devices and robots, according to its website.

Sounds dead useful — and fun!

Author: Cori

Cori Faklaris (aka "HeyCori") is a PhD researcher at Carnegie Mellon University's Human-Computer Interaction Institute in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. Faklaris is an social media expert and longtime journalist who brings this expertise to her work in usability for privacy, security and emerging technologies, such as the Internet of Things.

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