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Beyond the Hype: Data Visualization and Dashboards

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Nelson Ng

on 3 January 2014

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Transcript of Beyond the Hype: Data Visualization and Dashboards

drowning in data
analysis-paralysis
information overload
many versions of the truth
information silos
Charles Joseph Minard
William Playfair
Florence Nightingale
Hans Rosling
Alan Turing
Charles Babbage
René Descartes
1967: Jacques Bertin
1977: John Tukey
1983: Edward Tufte
Dundas Data Visualization, Inc.
Services
Software
Development tool (platform) that helps people create custom dashboards.
Consulting, advisory services, training, end-to-end implementation.
www.dundas.com
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Last Mile
"The fact of the matter is that your brain was simply not built to store unrelated bits of information, such as lists of names and numbers."
70% of our body's sense receptors are in our eyes
50% of the human brain is devoted to the visual sense
4 sets of numbers
Anscombe, F.J. (1973). "Graphs in Statistical Analysis". The American Statistician (The American Statistician, Vol. 27, No. 1) 27 (1): 17–21
Anscombe, F.J. (1973). "Graphs in Statistical Analysis". The American Statistician (The American Statistician, Vol. 27, No. 1) 27 (1): 17–21
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Pre-Attentive Attributes
of Visual Perception
Colin Ware
...the human visual system is a pattern seeker of enormous power and subtlety. The eye and the visual cortex of the brain form a massively parallel processor that provides the highest-bandwidth channel into human cognitive centers.

However, the visual system has its own rules. We can easily see patterns presented in certain ways, but if they are presented in other ways, they become invisible.

If we can understand how perception works, our knowledge can be translated into rules for displaying information.

If we disobey the rules, our data will be incomprehensible or misleading.
Our mission:
Help people make better and faster decisions with their data.
Hall of Shame
History
Principles of Data Presentation
1. Choose the most appropriate tool for the job
2. Show the data and do not distort it
3. Show context, relationships, explanation and causality
4. To clarify, add detail
5. Good design is as little design as possible
Principles of Data Presentation
Pre-Attentive Attributes
1. Choose the most appropriate tool for the job


you need to look up individual values
you need to compare individual values
you need precision
you need to look at multiple units of measure
you want to show details and their sums
Tables work best when
Graphs show trends, patterns, outliers and a lot of data, all at once
Pre-Attentive Attributes
Which ones are best for showing quantitative values?
Tools for Quantitative Values
2. Show the data and do not distort it
3. Show context, relationships and causality
4. To clarify, add detail
5. Good design is as little design as possible
"A most unconventional design strategy is revealed: to clarify, add detail."

Edward Tufte
Envisioning Information, May 1990
3 ways we consume data
Reports
Ad-hoc Analysis
Dashboards
Reports
Ad-hoc Analysis
Dashboards
most important information
to achieve business objectives
at a glance
Dashboards: Critical Success Factors
relevance
integration
design
Introduction
Dundas Data Visualization, Inc.
www.dundas.com
2004: Stephen Few
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