There is talk about stories having a beginning, middle, and end, but what does that mean for data stories? How do you create the overall structure for those? In a paper to be presented at EuroVis next week, I discuss a simple but very useful structure that I have found "in the wild," and that I believe to be useful and generalizable.
Embellished charts are common in information graphics. But are embellished bar charts actually harder to read than plain ones? In a short paper to be presented at EuroVis next week, Drew Skau and I present a study that looked into this question. [Read more...] about Paper: Readability and Precision in Pictorial Bar Charts
How should you sequence information in a data story so it makes the most sense? Are some sequences better than others? Does time have to move forward or does it not matter? In a paper to be published at EuroVis next week, with Jessica Hullman at UW and my Tableau Research colleague Heidi Lam, we report on a pair of studies that looked into this. [Read more...] about Paper: Finding a Clear Path: Structuring Strategies for Visualization Sequences
It's not a secret that I think that we need to ask some harder questions about the foundations that we're building visualization on. In a paper to be presented at the BELIV workshop at VIS next week, I'm making the case for that more extensively than I have so far. The full title of the paper is An Empire Built On Sand: Reexamining What We Think We Know About Visualization. [Read more...] about Paper: An Empire Built On Sand
How do we read pie charts? Do they differ from the even more reviled donut charts? What about common pie chart designs like exploded pies? In two papers to be presented at EuroVis next week, Drew Skau and I show that the common wisdom about how we read these charts (by angle) is almost certainly wrong, and that things are much more complicated than we thought. [Read more…] about A Pair of Pie Chart Papers
Presentation is often considered a part of visualization, but what does that mean for the kinds of techniques we use? Are they the same as used for analysis? What criteria should we use to pick them? In a new paper, I discuss a class of techniques I call presentation-only.
I’m very happy to finally be able to announce our paper on the connected scatterplot technique. It describes the technique, provides some historical perspective, and most of all looks into how easy to understand and engaging the technique actually is. [Read more…] about Paper: The Connected Scatterplot for Presenting Paired Time Series
Information graphics often use variations and embellishments of standard charts that may distort the way people read the data. But how bad are these distortions really? In a paper to be presented at EuroVis this week, Drew Skau, Lane Harrison, and I tested their effects in an experiment. [Read more…] about Paper: An Evaluation of the Impact of Visual Embellishments in Bar Charts
Unit charts are not common in visualization, and they are often considered a bad idea. The same is true for using shapes other than rectangles. Neither is based on much actual research, however. In a new paper, we look at the specific example of ISOTYPE-style charts – and find them to be quite effective.
Visualization is often considered to consist of three phases: exploration, analysis, and presentation. While the former two topics are covered well in the literature, there has been very little work specifically on presentation. In an upcoming paper, Jock Mackinlay and I argue that presentation, and in particular storytelling and communication of data, are the logical next step for the field, and provide some research directions. [Read more…] about Paper: Storytelling, The Next Step for Visualization