Family tree metaphor is a great design for life

3 Sep 201611 Shares

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The metaphor of evolutionary tree maps are key to our understanding of everything and also the source of some of the most beautiful art.

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Family, species, technology, science, life… You name it, the metaphor of evolutionary tree maps are key to our understanding of everything, and also the source of some of the most beautiful art you will ever remember.

Think about it. Organisational charts and the family tree come from the same metaphor of using a tree and various branches to impart vital information.

Even the term cloud computing could quite possibly owe its origins to the charts IT people used to use to visualise complex IT systems, and to explain how local area networks in one building would map or connect to wide area networks or storage area networks somewhere else via “clouds” of networks and systems. MIT credits tech entrepreneur and investor Sean O’Sullivan of SOSV and George Favalora with co-coining the term cloud computing.

Either way, evolutionary tree art using trunks and branches to explain everything from genealogy to biology are not only informative, but beautiful, resulting in some of the most ornate pieces of art and design of the last 200 years.

And now, thanks to Theodore W. Pietsch, these fantastic examples of great design have been collected in a wonderful tome entitled Trees of Life: A Visual History of Evolution.

Check out some of these great visuals from examples at Wink:

tree-maps-design

tree-maps-design

tree-maps-design

Disclosure: SOSV is an investor in Silicon Republic

Genealogy image via Shutterstock

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com