9 steps to a successful data analysis

In 2o11, Peter Huber wrote a book about what we (the collective we, or the we of data analysis enthusiasts) have learned about the science and art of data analysis over the past 50 years.

To anyone who is interested in data visualization we highly recommend reading this book. Over the course of about 200 pages Huber carefully outlines exactly what data analysis is, what the current challenges are and how they can be overcome.

One of the aspects of this work that we find particularly interesting is the fact that he gives us, in great detail, a road map or checklist of activities that should be completed, in a particular order, in order for any data analysis project to be successful and meaningful.

Allow us to examine Huber’s checklist and provide our own insights into how we can help.

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Star Spangled Data

With the 4th of July coming up our thoughts have been turning to all sorts of data surrounding the nations that we love. While VisualCue is a multinational company this branch (in English, that is,) is based out of the United States.

With that in mind we were talking about different uses for data to give citizens insight into their nations. Of course once we started talking about it around the office we started scouring the Internet for cool examples of what this sort of data could do.

While a lot of the data was pretty controversial and divisive we decided to instead focus on the best sites that just shed interesting light on new patterns of how nations celebrate themselves.

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VisualCue 2.7 Release Notes

It’s one of those skills that no one seems to fully appreciate and yet could solve so many problems: listening. If everyone could listen, truly listen, to each other and learn from each other just imagine what we could accomplish.

What does this have to do with a data visualization and analysis platform like VisualCue?

Plenty. Because VisualCue is a platform we are constantly shaping, changing, evolving and improving the formula to make your VisualCue experience better and provide the single best analysis tool we can.

How do we know what to change and what to improve on? Simple- we listened to you. Here are the changes you requested that you will see in VisualCue 2.7- coming June 30th.

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Summer Sports

It’s one of those things we absolutely love about the summer: sports!

We’ve been following the NBA finals and are heading to a baseball game tonight.

But there’s just one thing about sports that we’ve never been able to wrap our heads around: all of the statistics. Ever since the baseball cards we collected as kids with those rows and columns of numbers we’ve never been able to see the impressive statistic or indicator of greatness.

Now we know why: it wasn’t that the statistics weren’t impressive, it’s that they were too difficult to understand!

That’s why we went around the internet and gathered some of our favorite sports visualizations to gain new insight into the players we love!

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What Makes A Data Visualization Memorable?

At VisualCue we like being at the forefront of data visualization thinking and research. This corporate culture we’ve created makes sense when you consider that VisualCue is, at it’s heart, a data visualization platform built almost entirely on new ways to look at data. It makes sense, then, that such a company would be keenly interested in any new research on what kinds of data visualizations are the most effective.

Imagine our delight, then, when new research presented just last year at the Eurographics Conference on Visualization published a paper from research at the University of Arizona and Indiana University on what kinds of data visualization led to an increase in recall accuracy.

The findings of that research, which we summarize here, should be interesting to anybody who wants to make sure that they are using the right data visualization techniques to make the most out of their data.

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Data Visualization Maps

When you think about it, data visualization has been around for a long, long time. While we didn’t get things like bar graphs and pie charts until the 18th century (for better or for worse) when you think about it some of the smartest people on the planet have been trying to visualize information in ways that make things easier to understand for centuries.

Early maps of the stars and astronomical charts and constellations? Those can definitely be counted as data visualization- people looked up into the sky, saw patterns, and then copied those patterns down on paper for others to follow.

Or consider the age of exploration- what was one of the first things the explorers who started sailing around the world discovering new continents did? They made maps of their travels for others to follow: data visualization at its finest.

If you take the broad view of data visualization then maps and the patterns we found within them must certainly be some of our earliest, and most visually impressive, attempts to present information in a way that anyone can understand.

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The Data of Nature

Maybe it’s just the impending summer months or the fact that spring is on it’s way out, but around the VisualCue offices we’ve been itching to get outside.

And, of course, pretty much anything that we think about around the offices gets correlated, somehow, to data visualization and the information surrounding that topic. What else did you expect? We’re data enthusiasts.

This Friday we’d like to share some of the most amazing visualizations dealing with nature and the outdoors that we’ve found from around the internet in celebration of outdoor summer fun!

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