What is data visualization and why is it important?
“By visualizing the information, we turn it into a landscape that you can explore with your eyes, a kind of information map. And when you are lost in information, an information map is quite useful.”
From an image, we can tell stories, and when it comes to telling them from data, it is a challenge, but fortunately, it is possible. Presenting data in images or graphs is not about merely displaying numbers. It is about understanding a context through numbers to convey information that is not easy to capture with the naked eye. But, everyone may be wondering, how do we tell stories with data?
There is something called data visualization, and this is, in simple words, bringing data to life through graphical representations that tell a story. Creating visualizations is a combination of science and art that ranges from data exploration and cleansing to graphic design. All this to observe the basic patterns and connections and transform them into a design that tells a story or focuses only on the crucial information.
Data visualizations have a very redeemable particularity compared to the usual ways in which data analyzed, which are usually reports and overwhelming tables with large amounts of numbers that do not end up being well processed by our brains at the end of the day. This is because our minds are designed to remember the essence, the message, and the feeling, not the number. And this is exactly what a data visualization produces, an impact on some of our emotions.
The success of storytelling with data lies in how easy it is for an audience to make decisions, easily spot trends, grasp difficult concepts, or identify new patterns. With interactive visualization, the idea can be taken further through technology, changing how we process and engage with data. Numbers will always have an important story to tell, so data visualization is not relevant only to data analysts or scientists. It’s needed to understand data visualization in any area: finance, medicine, marketing, technology, and design. Or between all. So all of us, at any time, are going to need effective data visualization.
There are many concerns that this whole world of data visualization can generate, questions such as Is it possible to assess the effectiveness of transmitting information according to graph types? Are there dashboards useful for every kind of audience? Are there different kinds of Dashboards? Is it possible to explore the data or to analyze only what is truly important? We will answer these and more questions in the following articles.