Book Image

Visualize This

By : Nathan Yau‚ÄØ
Book Image

Visualize This

By: Nathan Yau‚ÄØ

Overview of this book

Visualize This is a guide on how to visualize and tell stories with data, providing practical design tips complemented with step-by-step tutorials. It begins with a description of the huge growth of data and visualization in industry, news, and gov't and opportunities for those who tell stories with data. Logically it moves on to actual stories in data-statistical ones with trends and human stories. the technical part comes up quickly with how to gather, parse and format data with Python, R, Excel, Google docs, and so on, and details tools to visualize data-native graphics for the Web like ActionScript, Flash libraries, PHP, JavaScript, CSS, HTML. Every chapter provides an example as well. Patterns over time and kinds of data charts are followed by proportions, chart types and examples. Next, examples and descriptions of outliers and how to show them, different kinds of maps, how to guide your readers and explain the data "in the visualization". The book ends with a value-add appendix on graphical perception.
Table of Contents (12 chapters)

Wrapping Up

A lot of data people see design as just a way to make your graphics look pretty. That’s certainly part of it, but design is also about making your graphics readable, understandable, and usable. You can help people understand your data better than if they were to look at a default graph. You can clear clutter, highlight important points in your data, or even evoke an emotional response. Data graphics can be entertaining, fun, and informative. Sometimes it’ll just be the former, depending on your goal, but no matter what you try to design—visualization, information graphic, or data art—let the data guide your work.

When you have a big dataset, and you don’t know where to begin, the best place to start is with a question. What do you want to know? Are you looking for seasonal patterns? Relationships between multiple variables? Outliers? Spatial relationships? Then look back to your data to see if you can answer your question. If you don’...