What is it? Visualization is a technique to graphically represent sets of data. When data is large or abstract, visualization can help make the data easier to read or understand. Data visualization is the graphical representation of information. Bar charts, scatter graphs, and maps are examples of simple data visualizations that have been used for decades. Information technology combines the principles of visualization with powerful applications and large data sets to create sophisticated images and animations.
What is it?
mapping systems and remote sensors and generates a visualization that shows where nitrates concentrate in soil and how different modes of fertilizer delivery—coupled with variables such as precipitation—affect the rates and locations of groundwater pollution. Faculty and researchers in a wide range of academic disciplines use visualizations to present data in ways that help generate new knowledge and understanding.
Need for Data Visualization
Let’s say you need to understand thousands or even millions of rows of data, and you have a short time to do it in. The data may come from your team, in which case perhaps you’re already familiar with what it’s measuring and what the results are likely to be. Or it may come from another team, or maybe several teams at once, and be completely unfamiliar. Either way, the reason you’re looking at it is that you have a decision to make, and you want to be informed by the data before making it. Something probably hangs in the balance: a customer, a product, or a profit. How are you going to make sense of all that information efficiently so you can make a good decision? Data visualization is an important answer to that question. However, not all visualizations are actually that helpful. You may be all too familiar with lifeless bar graphs, or line graphs made with software defaults and couched in a slideshow presentation or lengthy document. They can be at best confusing, and at worst misleading. But the good ones are an absolute revelation. The best data visualizations are ones that expose something new about the underlying patterns and relationships contained within the data. Understanding those relationships — and being able to observe them — is key to good decision making. The Periodic Table is a classic testament to the potential of visualization to reveal hidden relationships in even small datasets. One look at the table, and chemists and middle school students alike grasp the way atoms arrange themselves in groups: alkali metals, noble gasses, halogens. If visualization done right can reveal so much in even a small dataset like this, imagine what it can reveal within terabytes or petabytes of information.
■ Cannot see a pattern without data visualization. Simply seeing numbers on a grid often does not convey the whole story — and in the worst case, it can even lead to a wrong conclusion. This is best demonstrated by Anscombe’s quartet where four seemingly similar groups of x/y coordinates reveal very different patterns when represented in a graph (see Figure 1).
■ Cannot fit all of the necessary data points onto a single screen. Even with the smallest reasonably readable font, single-line spacing, and no grid, one cannot realistically fit more than a few thousand data points on a single page or screen using numerical information only. When using advanced data visualization techniques, one can fit tens of thousands (an orderof-magnitude difference) of data points onto a single screen. In his book The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, Edward Tufte gives an example of more than 21,000 data points effectively displayed on a US map that fits onto a single screen.
■ Cannot effectively show deep and broad data sets on a single screen. Fitting in and analyzing hundreds or thousands of columns of attributes (dimensions in BI speak) is an enormous challenge. Imagine a typical drug trial conducted by a pharmaceutical company where each patient has thousands of attributes: physical, psychological, genetic, behavioral, etc. Analysts looking for patterns, dependencies, and correlations typically need to run the data through complex statistical models before they can find a pattern or correlation. Building such models and running them through millions of rows of data can be time-consuming and can tax even the most advanced software and hardware resources. But in a technique often used in the pharma industry, reducing each data point in a column to a single pixel and colorcoding pixels according to their value ranges can let an analyst relatively easily visualize and identify a pattern and then quickly zoom in to research the details. Types of visualization It’s important to point out that not all data visualization is created equal. Just as we have paints and pencils and chalk and film to help us capture the world in different ways, with different emphases and for different purposes, there are multiple ways in which to depict the same dataset. Or, to put it another way, think of visualization as a new set of languages you can use to communicate. Just as French and Russian and Japanese are all ways of encoding ideas so that those ideas can be transported from one person’s mind to another, and decoded again — and just as certain languages are more conducive to certain ideas — so the various kinds of data visualization are a kind of bidirectional encoding that lets ideas and information be transported from the database into your brain. Explaining and exploring
An important distinction lies between visualization for exploring and visualization for explaining. A third category, visual art, comprises images that encode data but cannot easily be decoded back to the original meaning by a viewer. This kind of visualization can be beautiful, but it is not helpful in making decisions. Visualization for exploring can be imprecise. It’s useful when you’re not exactly sure what the data has to tell you and you’re trying to get a sense of the relationships and patterns contained within it for the first time. It may take a while to figure out how to approach or clean the data, and which dimensions to include. Therefore, visualization for exploring is best done in such a way that it can be iterated quickly and experimented upon, so that you can find the signal within the noise. Software and automation are your friends here. Visualization for explaining is best when it is cleanest. Here, the ability to pare down the information to its simplest form — to strip away the noise entirely — will increase the efficiency with which a decision maker can understand it. This is the approach to take once you understand what the data is telling you, and you want to communicate that to someone else. This is the kind of visualization you should be finding in those presentations and sales reports. Visualization for explaining also includes infographics and other categories of hand-drawn or custom-made images. Automated tools can be used, but one size does not fit all.
How does it work?
Visualizations encompass a wide and growing range of projects, reflecting creative ways of representing all sorts of data visually, with virtually no limit to what kind of information can be translated into an image. Visualizations have been created that represent the possible moves on a chess board, the structure of a piece of music, and the messages in a person’s email inbox, to name a few. The designer of a visualization determines which visual element (color, shape, size, motion, and so forth) will represent individual data points. Images can be 2D or 3D, can be fixed or dynamic, and can allow user interaction. One application, for example, shows political contributions to various candidates. You can select a state, a political race in that state, and a monetary threshold for contributions. The application builds a 2D image that shows who supported each candidate and at what level (based on the relative sizes of the circles that represent contributors), revealing interesting webs of political influence. Astrophysicists use visualizations to create 3D images that model the forces of a supernova. In each case, images or animations are the products of applications that render data in a visual form based on the design of the visualization.
Data visualization techniques
The data is usually represented by points in the coordinate system’s first quadrant (assuming the data point values are not negative). Figure 1 shows the distribution of miles per gallon (MPG) vs.
Figure 2: Total crimes (1993 . A problem with this way of displaying data arises when the amount of data points gets very high as the points become too dense.2002) Extensions of linegraphs are survey plots. The quality of the visualization now depends on the number of bins and their sizes. The following figure shows an example for a linegraph displaying the number of crimes in Niedersachsen in the years 1993 to 2002. They can be obtained by turning the plot 90 degrees clockwise and then halve the length of the rays and add this half on the other side of
. European (blue) and Japanese (green) cars. A very common visualization form is the scatterplot. In order to avoid this Becker suggests binning of the data set [Sahling03].Two-dimensional data Two-dimensional data can be visualized in different ways. In a scatterplot the frame for the data presentation is a Cartesian coordinate system. horsepower for American (red).
Figure 1: Scatterplot of car data set [Hoffmann99] Another important visualization technique for two-dimensional data is the linegraph. in which the axes correspond to the two dimensions. In case of two or more data sets being displayed in the same coordinate system different colours can be used to distinguish between the distinct plots. The difference to scatterplots is that this time the relation between the dimension on the horizontal axis and the one on the vertical axis is definite.
3. Histograms are particular barcharts with the bar standing for the sum of the data point class [Hoffmann02]. Next we have to study the effect on the possible resulting data sets if we increase the number of variables or values they can hold. Figure 3 shows an example that has been generated with Matlab. The additional dimension in a linegraph representation has the effect that the resulting plot is a surface.3 High-dimensional data The visualization of high-dimensional data raises a very severe problem: the visualization space is limited to three dimensions or even to only two since data is usually displayed on screens or paper. Furthermore we have 100. method of payment.000 rows representing the records. time of payment and a unique identifier.
Figure 3: 3D linegraph (surface) [generated with Matlab] A very widespread technique for visualizing the third dimension in a two-dimensional coordinate system is the use of colour or a variation of the data point size. In order to do this. sales channel. all divided
. consider the following example [Mihalisin02]: We have a data set consisting of six columns which represent the attributes product. orthogonal to the other two. Another very interesting visualization technique is animation to show the variation of the plot with time for instance. territory. We also offer the opportunity of two distinct methods of payment.the now vertical axis. The third dimension is achieved in scatterplots and barcharts by adding a further axis.
3. Our company sells five products in five different territories via two sales channels. One of the obstacles in the discovery of high-dimensional data sets information Mihalisin [Mihalisin02] points out is that techniques of extracting lowdimensional information and displaying it cannot automatically be employed for highdimensional data as the data set size is too large. Considering the last figure a barchart representation would be the same as above but with the area under the graph filled in.2 Three-dimensional data The two-dimensional techniques can easily be extended to three dimensions. The last technique I would like to mention here is the visualization of data as barcharts.
100. This scheme uses a person’s ability of recognizing faces. They map data components to graphical attributes. The most famous technique is the use of Chernoff faces [Hoffmann02].into five quarters.000×499) = 101350 as the amount of different data sets. leads to 100. This means there are 5×5×2×2×5 = 500 possible cell results. In this case a data point is represented by an individual face whereas the features map the data dimensions. Five different sizes of the eyes could correspond to the five products of the example above and the mouth might symbolize the two methods of payment. Examples for Chernoff faces shows figure 4. These branches correspond to the different dimensions and the length of the limbs mark the value of this particular dimension for the studied data point. hierarchical and geometrical methods. An illustration of the star glyphs approach is figure 5. 3. This is a huge number (larger than the number quantity of atoms in the universe!) and it is only a very small database.000 records. A polygon line connects the outer ends of the spokes [Oellien03].
Figure 4: Chernoff faces [Ward99] The probably most common icon-based technique is the use of star glyphs to denote data points.499!/(100.1 Icon-based methods Icon-based methods are approaches that use icons (or glyphs) to represent high-dimensional data. Coming now to the different visualization techniques. we distinguish between icon-based.3. A star glyph consists of a centre point with equally angled rays. each having one of the 500 cell results.
two sales channels. The resulting coordinate axes combination system is the following:
. Consider again the example with the five products. Our horizontal axis is now divided into five parts while the vertical axis becomes halved. Even if you decided to use a Cartesian system it would put more weight on these two dimensions and so probably distort the data pattern. so each part of the pay type axis gets further divided into two parts that represent the different channels.3. Another obstacle is the amount of variables and the size of the data set itself. First of all you have to select the two outermost dimensions. We choose the quarters and the pay types.Figure 5: Star glyphs [Oellien03]
These icon-based techniques are very vivid but have several disadvantages. A very severe problem is the organisation of the glyphs on the screen as no coordinate system representing two of the dimensions is provided. If the number of rays become too high a distinction between the different spokes and the values they represent is not possible anymore. 3. A similar unclear map emerges if the number of data points exceeds a certain amount. five territories. two methods of payment and five quarters [Mihalisin02]. The axis corresponding to the quarters will embed the products so these elements become subdivided as well.2 Hierarchical methods The most important representative of the group of hierarchical visualization techniques is dimensional stacking. We now decide that we would like the sales channel to be embedded into the method of payment. Finally the upright axis lodges the five territories. It is a method of embedding coordinate systems recursively into each other [Grinstein02a].
In order to visualize the amount of data points you can use a colour/grey scale. The common depiction of the dimensional stacking technique is a bit more compact and not as nicely presented as the one above. A technique that displays the correlation between dimensions (not the data itself!) recursively [Hoffmann02] is the fractal foam. Considering the colour scale drawn next to the plot the filled rectangle would represent an amount of less than 40.000 items.
. A great challenge is the question of labelling. which symbolize the other dimensions. Fixed to the second layer of circles is a third layer which describes the correlation of these dimensions and so on.Figure 6: Dimensional stacking In the figure above goods of product type four. are close to each other. only separated by a thicker line. which are now spaced to make the distinction between the different attribute combinations easier. Attached to this circle are further circles. This method is very useful for hierarchical data sets that only have a small number of dimensions as otherwise the embedding process will make the resulting plot too crowded. via the first sales channel and the first type of payment can be represented by the coloured rectangle. The way chosen in the example is one possibility of naming the different variables in the plot. A high correlation requires a large circle. sold in quarter one in territory four. This value is binned since otherwise a clear visualization would not be possible. The starting point is a chosen dimension that is depicted by a coloured circle. The size of these rings corresponds to the correlation between the inner circle and the fastened ones. An example of fractal foam can be found in figure 7. Usually the rectangles.
A simple example with three points and four dimensions is shown below: The points displayed are A = (1.Figure 7: Fractal foam (sepal length – centre (white). 2. Probably the easiest and most commonly used one is the method of parallel coordinates. 5). namely Iris setosa.3 Geometrical methods Geometrical methods are a very large group of visualization techniques. 4. A data point is now drawn into this system of axes with a polygonal line. It consists of three different Iris types. One of the familiar high-dimensional data set examples used to explain data visualization techniques is the Iris data set. all measured in millimetres. B. 3. Here the dimensions are represented by parallel lines. 3. petal length – right (red). 4. which are equally spaced. sepal width – bottom (green)) [Hoffmann99] 3. petal width – top (yellow). Iris Versicolor and Iris Virginica. which crosses the variable lines at the locations the data point holds for the examined dimension. C This method is not exclusively applicable to data sets that are as simple as the one above. As you can see in the
Figure 8: Parallel coordinates for data points A. the sepal width. They are linearly scaled so that the bottom of the axis stands for the lowest possible value whereas the top corresponds to the highest value. The variables of this data set are the sepal length.3. B = (2. the petal length and the petal width. 1. 6) and C = (1.
Figure 10: Parallel coordinates (Iris data set) [Hoffmann99] ^top^
. This characteristic permits a rearrangement of the displayed dimensions. In the diagram the petal width seems to be a good classifier for the red Iris type. Figure 10 shows the same Iris data set but this time normalized and with the dimensions sepal width and sepal length swapped.
Figure 9: Parallel coordinates (Iris data set) [Grinstein01] A very significant feature of this visualization technique is that the dimensions are treated equally. which gives another view on the data and therefore might lead to the recognition of certain patterns (or classification attributes) that would otherwise be hidden in the actual visualization arrangement.plot below the parallel coordinate technique is a tool which enables you to find out attributes that allow a categorization of the different flower types. It is also a fairly good attribute to distinguish between the violet and green flower category. The resultant graph looks very different and much clearer.
2. 1. This method plots each data point as a function of the data values using a specific equation. the function
For data point B. x2.. xn) and xn are the values of the data points for the particular dimension. 5). the function
If you plot these three data points into one coordinate system using Matlab you obtain the following result:
. 3. the function
For data point C.. 4.. 5)). The function which draws these curves is shown as:
where x=(x1. Consider the example of the three data points already used to explain the parallel coordinates technique (A = (1. For data point A. B = (2. 4. 6) and C = (1. 3.Another interesting geometrical visualization technique is the use of Andrew’s curves [Hoffmann02]. The data point curves are usually sketched in the interval -π<t<π. .
In the next example the method has been applied to the car data set. year of manufacture. cylinders. The red spots in the figure below symbolize American cars.
. Each cell of this matrix is then a scatterplot or a barchart respectively. ^top^ A very basic technique to visualize high-dimensional data is the application of multiple views. the green ones Japanese cars and the blue ones European cars. acceleration. C Applying this algorithm now on the Iris data set mentioned before results in a graph that looks slightly more complex. The disadvantage is the long computational time as every data point requires the calculation of a trigonometric function [Hoffmann02].
Figure 12: Andrew’s curves (Iris data set) [Hoffmann99] The advantage of this algorithm is that it is easily applied to data with a large amount of dimensions. This table contains the combinations of miles per gallon (MPG). It reveals correlations and disparities between variables since the representation of the different component combinations next to each other allows a visual comparison of the possible connections. B. horsepower and weight for three different car types. This method is widely employed for data sets that contain diverse attributes.Figure 11: Andrew’s curves for data points A. where n is the number of dimensions. another widely employed set for visualization techniques. They are often used with scatterplots or barcharts leading to an n×n cell matrix.
each representing one dimension. which are connected forming a circle. The spring constant of each spring is the value of the data point of the respective dimension. They are both fairly new approaches to the problem. In order to determine the location of the data point the sum of the spring forces needs to equal zero. The car example produces a matrix. whereas the combination of MPG and weight reveals a negative correlation [Hoffmann02]. If you apply this method to the well known Iris data set you can obtain figure 14. The ends of the lines mark the dimensional anchor (DA) of the respective variable.
. If the data set was extended to ten dimensions for instance the presentation of the corresponding graph in a clear way would no longer be possible. the other end to the data point. After that one end of a spring is fastened to each dimensional anchor. Even though this method is a very functional tool in the visualization of data it does have several disadvantages. From a centre point n equally spaced limbs of the same length spread out. A very problematic one is the fact that the user becomes overwhelmed by the number of charts they have to evaluate and keep in mind while doing so.Figure 13: Scatter plot matrix (Car data set) [Hoffmann99] This figure clearly identifies a positive correlation between horsepower and weight. The last two techniques I would like to present in this paper belong to the division of anchor visualization methods. the second being the further development of the first one. which is not only a manageable quantity to work with but also to display. Radial Coordinate Visualization (RadViz) uses the spring paradigm [Hoffmann02]. The usage of space is a more practical aspect that needs consideration. Before the data points can be visualized by this technique they need to be normalized.
takes remedial measures. ^top^
The second dimensional anchor technique. The major disadvantage is the overlap of points.Figure 14: RadViz (Iris data set) [Grinstein01] An advantage of RadViz is the fact that it preserves certain symmetries of the data set [Hoffmann02]. This technique nevertheless shows the clustering of the data points in the middle of the polygon as it uses the same spring paradigm. But it also makes a study of the distribution along the different dimensions possible since it plots this scattering along the axes using the barchart technique [Hoffmann02]. It illustrates the DAs not as points as in RadViz but as lines so that the graph becomes a polygon.
Figure 15: PolyViz (Iris data set) [Grinstein01]
. The emerging plot is a combination of RadViz and the application of the barchart technique. which has been named PolyViz.
Apparently. Mindmaps Trendmap 2007
Informationarchitects. In the following chapter I will introduce non-linear projection methods that reduce the size of the dimension vector so that the display of the data sets becomes facilitated. ordered by category.jp presents the 200 most successful websites on the web.
. 2. proximity.
DATA visualization tools 1. Quite comprehnsive. success. Displaying News Newsmap is an application that visually reflects the constantly changing landscape of the Google News news aggregator. web-sites are connected as they’ve never been before. popularity and perspective in a mindmap.All the techniques explained above visualize data sets without trying to change them in order to simplify the visualization. The size of data blocks is defined by their popularity at the moment.
. News can be zoomed in and out. The navigation is possible with a timeline.Voyage is an RSS-feader which displays the latest news in the ―gravity area‖.
Digg BigSpy arranges popular stories at the top when people digg them. Displaying Data Amaztype. Bigger stories have more diggs. the larger is the stack. collects the information from Amazon and presents it in the form of keyword you’ve provided.
Digg Stack: Digg stories arrange themselves as stack as users digg them.
. To get more information about a given book.
3. simply click on it. a typographic book search. The more diggs a story gets.
which are clicked more often.
Time Magazine uses visual hills (spikes) to emphasize the density of American population in its map.
. The tool uses Flickr API to present the uploaded images in real-time. are highlighted as ―warm‖ – in red color. More popular sections.Similar idea is being used by Flickrtime. The images form the clock which shows the current time.
CrazyEgg lets you explore the behavior of your visitors with a heat map.
In Rosling’s hands. His Trendalyzer software (recently acquired by Google) turns complex global trends into lively animations. intuitive and even playful. global trends — life expectancy. as colorful bubbles.
. making decades of data pop. child mortality. Asian countries. float across the grid — toward better national health and wealth. in which he explains a new way of presenting statistical data. poverty rates – become clear. Animated bell curves representing national income distribution squish and flatten.Hans Rosling TED Talk is a legendary talk of the Swedish professor Hans Rosling.
Compact and beautiful presentation of data. calculated from a large number of weblogs.
.Three Views shows three views of the earth. in which each country is represented by a circle that shows the amount of money spent on the military (size of circle) and what fraction of the country’s earnings that uses (colour).
We Feel Fine shows human feelings.
.Visualizing the Power Struggle in Wikipedia displays the most popular articles and the most frequent search queries in the heatmap.
.Websites as graphs. divided into interactive data blocks. An HTML DOM Visualizer Applet. images. which displays sites as graphs depending on the amount of links. forms and other tags. The density of events is displayed on the map. div tags.
Interactive History Timeline presents the history of Great Britain.
Elastic Lists demonstrates the ―elastic list‖ principle for browsing multi-facetted data structures. Nice to observe.Winning Lotto Numbers is supposed to present the frequency of appearance of every number from one year to the next one. useful to bookmark. You can click any number of list entries to query the database for a combination of the selected attributes. This graph is definitely not one of the most clear ones.
. Author’s blog regularly informs about new experiments in the area of data visualization. The approach visualizes relative proportions (weights) ofmetadata by size and visuzalizes characteristicness of a metadata weight by brightness.
We have attempted create a system which automatically generates graphics according to predefined rules.‖
. 4. Kennedy assassination as timeline with numerous presentation options. ―The challenge is to find forms of graphical and/or typographical representation of the essays that are both appealing and informative.The JFK Assassination TimelineAn Ajax-based approach vor visual presentation of historical events. Displaying connections Munterbund showcases the results of research graphical visualization of text similarities in essays in a book. John F. The related article with further examples.
genres etc. movies. but still inspiring.) in a bubble.Burst Labs suggests similar or connected items to your search queries (favourite artists.
. tv shows. Not really new.
Universe DayLife displays events.
Musiclens gives music recommendations and presents your current mood and musical taste as a diagram. connections and news as circles which gravitate around the topic they are related to.
Figd’t Visualizer allows you to play around with your network.
. Windows and Linux. using any tag to create a Magnet. Available for Mac OS X. Once a Tag Magnet is created. members of the network will gravitate towards it if they have photos or music with that same Tag. Alpha-version.
What have I been listening to?: Lee Byron describes his approach of creating a histogram about his music listening history. You interface with the Visualizer through Flickr and LastFM tags.
The custom software in this work draws musical patterns in the form of translucent arches.Shape Of Song: What does music look like? The Shape of Song is an attempt to answer this seemingly paradoxical question. allowing viewers to see – literally – the shape of any composition available on the Web.
Musicmap: connections are represented as connected lines. they create a web.
Musicovery displays music taste connections and lets you listen to the song and browse through similar songs. The History of Programming Languages as an original timeline.
Lanuage Poster proves that even simple lines can be descriptive enough.
UBrowser is an open source test mule that renders interactive web pages onto geometry using OpenGL® and an embedded instance of Gecko. Flickr. eBay and images in 3D. Company promises that the days of mining through pages and pages of tiny thumbnails in an effort to find the item you are looking for are over. Displaying web-sites Spacetime offers Google. Yahoo.5. The tool displays all of your search results in an easy to view elegant 3D arrangement. the Mozilla rendering engine.
well-known through his blog Infosthetics. Creative design ideas combine form and content and generate fascinating graphs – is it a new area in the art of next
. The gallery has over 450 entries. Articles & Resources
Visualcomplexity.6. In his article Infosthetics: the beauty of data visualization Andrew Vande Moere.com
The project presents the most beautiful methods of data visualization as well as further references and book suggestions. discusses the aesthetics of data visualization and modern apparoaches in this area.
Dataesthetics Eric Blue provides some references to unusual Data Visualization methods.icio.
. We found the following 16 apps both visually stunning and delightfully useful. data visualization tools are changing the way we view content. latest development and design ideas. infosthetics – information aesthetics
Andrew Vande Moere about data visualization. Visualizing Delicious Roundup An overview of Del.
The article presents 13 new techniques of data visualization.com.us tools you can use to visualize your bookmarks.‖ An extensive overview by Mashable. with examples and further references. 16 Awesome Data Visualization Tools ―From navigating the Web in entirely new ways to seeing where in the world twitters are coming from.
Periodic Table A periodic table of visualization methods.
Sites Dedicated to Visualization
IBM's Many Eyes (our coverage) is a shared visualization and discovery service offering all kinds of visualizations you can explore or create. diagrams. Some examples are simply amazing. tree maps. bar charts and histograms. IBM Many Eyes
This Java-based service visualizes data online and helps to create pie charts. Tools and Services
You can create your own timelines with Xtimeline and Circavie.
7. Registration is required. diagrams and histograms ―on the fly‖. It also provides a Swivel API you can use to improve already existing visualization methods. You can find even more tools for designing your own diagrams and charts online in our article Charts and Diagrams Tools. prefuse | the prefuse visualization toolkit Presents the beta-version of a Java-based toolkit for programming of application with integrated data visualization methods Swivel This service creates pie charts.
grokker: web search or enterprise search offering map views of data. Flickr. VisualComplexity. tags. Yahoo!Image Search and YouTube. offering visualizations like the 3D visualization/tour of classical music/composers.com: first true visual search engine does visual search for shopping. Their software captures user clicks on each page and then presents a summary in the form of a heatmap. Visualization of the StumbleUpon network. proximity. SearchCrystal is a search visualization tool that let you compare.com is an online collection of visualizations (our coverage) Infosthetics discusses the aesthetics of data visualization Blogger Anonymous Professor is into visualization. here and here). remix and share results from sources on the web. then visually browse web sites linked from it
. (our coverage) oSkope: Visual search engine for finding products that searches Amazon. ordered by category. Mooter: Visual search engine that organizes results In clusters. popularity and perspective in a mindmap. Quintura: visual search engine that uses clouds. Visualizing the Power Struggle in Wikipedia displays the most popular articles and the most frequent search queries in the heatmap. news engines or RSS feeds. Ebay. Amazon. and highlighting. videos. Tafiti: Microsoft's experimental visual search engine running on Silverlight. Burst Labs suggests similar or connected items to your search queries in a bubble UBrowser renders interactive web pages onto geometry using OpenGL and an embedded instance of Gecko walk2web . eBay. Summize applies heatmaps to shopping via their search engine(our coverage here. success. Fotolia. KartOO: visual web searc. the value of a Digg and more. Visual Search Engines:
Riya's Like. Flickr and images all in one 3D space. images. blogs. RSS.enter a URL. (see also KoolTorch) Spacetime: search Google. Other heatmap sites include Feng-GUI and FuseStats. whether sites.jp presents the 200 most successful websites on the web. Yahoo!. Zip Codes visualized
Many Eyes Search Heatmaps: Heatmaps site CrazyEgg applies heatmaps to tracking what visitors do on a user's website.
Informationarchitects. ManagedQ: A visual search experiment with some built-in semantics. YouTube. Retrievr is an experimental service which lets you search and explore in a selection of Flickr images by drawing a rough sketch. Searchme: upcoming visual search for the web Xcavator: A photo search engine which utilizes visual clues that you provide to identify and extract similar pictures from large groups of digital images.
How does it work?
Visualizations encompass a wide and growing range of projects. can be fixed or dynamic. Why is it significant? Computer systems generate and store massive and growing amounts of data. You can select a state. where they can be easily discerned. which relies on asking the right questions. images or animations are the products of applications that render data in a visual form based on the design of the visualization. advanced networks. with virtually no limit to what kind of information can be translated into an image. The application builds a 2D image that shows who supported each candidate and at what level (based on the relative sizes of the circles that represent contributors). Google Browser. making data visualization a potentially valuable approach to learning for a large number of students and researchers. a political race in that state. shows political contributions to various candidates. Data visualizations offer one way to harness this infrastructure to find trends and correlations that can lead to important discoveries. data visualizations bring themes and ideas to the surface. One application. the structure of a piece of music. motion. and can allow user interaction. and LiveJournal Browser mapping systems and remote sensors and generates a visualization that shows where nitrates concentrate in soil and how different modes of fertilizer delivery—coupled with variables such as precipitation—affect the rates and locations of groundwater pollution. revealing interesting webs of political influence. Visualizations allow you to understand and process enormous amounts of information quickly because it is all represented in a single image or animation. and a monetary threshold for contributions. and the messages in a person’s e-mail inbox. size. Faculty and researchers in a wide range of academic disciplines use visualizations to present data in ways that help generate new knowledge and understanding. to name a few. At the same time. Moreover. virtually any kind of data from a broad range of academic disciplines can be represented visually. In each case. and so forth) will represent individual data points. Visualizations have been created that represent the possible moves on a chess board. distributed processing. As opposed to the traditional hypothesis-and-test method of inquiry.
. unconnected data sets. Astrophysicists use visualizations to create 3D images that model the forces of a supernova. Representing large amounts of disparate information in a visual form often allows you to see patterns that would otherwise be buried in vast. and other developments allow unprecedented access to data. Images can be 2D or 3D.
TouchGraph's Amazon Browser. reflecting creative ways of representing all sorts of data visually. shape. for example. The designer of a visualization determines which visual element (color.
or if data sets use different definitions or units. a poorly conceived visualization might show nothing of consequence or exaggerate the significance of certain trends. and this can be time-consuming. If data are incomplete or faulty. these issues must be resolved in order to create a valid visualization. users who prefer conventional ways of learning and processing information might be uncomfortable working with data visualizations. a lot of time and trouble go into a visualization that adds nothing to an understanding of the data that you wouldn’t find in a simple table or even a textual description. resulting in flawed or misleading conclusions.
. Finally. which require a different approach to understanding data. In some cases. Even if the data are reliable and consistent.What are the downsides?
Visualizations rely on accurate and matched data.