After posting my response to Gelman and Unwin’s article on visualization and statistical graphics recently, I have now collected links to all the three other responses as well: Stephen Few, Paul Murrell, and Hadley Wickham.
Here is the complete set, including the original article, my response, and the rejoinder (which I had already posted):
- Andrew Gelman and Anthony Unwin, Infovis and Statistical Graphics: Different Goals, Different Looks (original article, PDF)
- Responses (in alphabetic order):
- Stephen Few, Are Infovis and Statistical Graphics Really All That Different?
- Robert Kosara, InfoVis Is So Much More: A Comment on Gelman and Unwin and an Invitation to Consider the Opportunities
- Paul Murrell, Comment
- Hadley Wickham, Graphical criticism: some historical notes
- Andrew Gelman and Anthony Unwin, Tradeoffs in Information Graphics (rejoinder, PDF)
They are all interesting in their own way. Stephen Few goes through the many misconceptions very methodically and responds with thoughtful discussion and counterexamples, Paul Murrell lays out the principles of statistical graphics and asks the infovis community to pay more attention, and Hadley Wickham gives a nice historical perspective.
There is a lot of opportunity here not just to learn from what is being said, assumed, misunderstood, and explained, but also to pick up the many opportunities for collaboration between the fields. It’s baffling, quite frankly, that there are only a handful of people who know and understand both communities, when they share so many ideas, principles, and goals.