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)

More Than Numbers

Face it. Data can be boring if you don’t know what you’re looking for or don’t know that there’s something to look for in the first place. It’s just a mix of numbers and words that mean nothing other than their raw values. The great thing about statistics and visualization is that they help you look beyond that. Remember, data is a representation of real life. It’s not just a bucket of numbers. There are stories in that bucket. There’s meaning, truth, and beauty. And just like real life, sometimes the stories are simple and straightforward; and other times they’re complex and roundabout. Some stories belong in a textbook. Others come in novel form. It’s up to you, the statistician, programmer, designer, or data scientist to decide how to tell the story.

This was one of the first things I learned as a statistics graduate student. I have to admit that before entering the program, I thought of statistics as...