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)

Chapter 2

Handling Data

Before you start working on the visual part of any visualization, you actually need data. The data is what makes a visualization interesting. If you don’t have interesting data, you just end up with a forgettable graph or a pretty but useless picture. Where can you find good data? How can you access it?

When you have your data, it needs to be formatted so that you can load it into your software. Maybe you got the data as a comma-delimited text file or an Excel spreadsheet, and you need to convert it to something such as XML, or vice versa. Maybe the data you want is accessible point-by-point from a web application, but you want an entire spreadsheet.

Learn to access and process data, and your visualization skills will follow.