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Analyzing and Visualizing Data Dr. Lam TECM 4180.

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Presentation on theme: "Analyzing and Visualizing Data Dr. Lam TECM 4180."— Presentation transcript:

1 Analyzing and Visualizing Data Dr. Lam TECM 4180

2 What we’ll cover today Importance of data Data, information, and knowledge Introduction to a variety of visualizations and their purposes Visualization exercise and brainstorm activity

3 Big Data 90% of all data in the world was generated in the last 2 years Climate information, social media, digital media, purchase transactions, cell phone GPS data, etc. Big data can be useful or useless depending on what you do with it The whole goal of data analysis/visualization is to turn data (raw numbers) into information and make business decisions based on this information

4 Data vs. Information vs. Knowledge Data - raw numbers, words, etc. that lack context or meaning (e.g., 1.4%) Information- application of structure to data to convey meaning (e.g., “unemployment is down 1.4% in the past 6 months) Knowledge- understanding of a specific subject through experience or education (e.g., “a 1.4% decrease typically indicates sustainable growth)

5 Visually…

6 Example 1 Yes, Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, No, Yes, Yes Raw Data Context Responses to the market research question – “ Would you buy brand x at price y ? ” Information ??? Processing Creative commons attribution to FatMax 2007

7 Example 2 Raw Data Context Information 42, 63, 96, 74, 56, 86 Jayne ’ s scores in the six AS/A2 ICT modules ??? Processing Creative commons attribution to FatMax 2007

8 Example 3 Raw Data Context Information , The previous and current readings of a customer ’ s gas meter ??? Processing Creative commons attribution to FatMax 2007

9 Knowledge Examples Using the 3 previous examples: A Marketing Manager could use this information to decide whether or not to raise or lower price y Jayne ’ s teacher could analyze the results to determine whether it would be worth her re-taking a module Looking at the pattern of the customer ’ s previous gas bills may identify that the figure is abnormally low and they are fiddling the gas meter

10 A few notes about data, information, and knowledge Data (provided it hasn’t been manipulated, and has been collected correctly) is objective, and therefore, rarely “incorrect” A yes is a yes, a no is a no Information, however, is context dependent. This means it can sometimes be “wrong” E.g., “Customers preferred Coke to Pepsi” (but when?)

11 Choosing the right graphics Decide what your story (purpose) is Select a graphic that most effectively represents this story to your user Include the proper supplementary information

12 Tables Purpose: To help your readers find data or other information rapidly Tables can be useful to compare data, but may not be as effective as a more visual representation Include a descriptive tie, row and column headings, unit of measure (if needed), and source Comparison of Foods FoodCaloriesFat Apple1010 Apple Pop tart g

13 Line Graph Purpose : To show trends and cycles; To show the relationship between two or more variables Tend to be good for interval level variables (numerical data)

14 What’s wrong with this?


16 Bar Graph Purpose: To help readers compare quantities and see trends at a glance Tend to be good to display categorical variables (non- numerical)

17 What’s wrong with this?


19 Pie Chart Purpose: To show the composition of a whole

20 What’s wrong with this?




24 Pictographs Purpose: To help readers compare quantities and see trends Simply introduces an additional visual element to an already existing graph (bar, line, etc.)

25 Data Visualization Example deeper-water/

26 What, then, is the purpose of data visualizations? They provide context for user and transform data into information Data visualizations tell a story Stories can be simple or complex, but a visualization should tell the story better than the alternative Help or lead people to make decisions based on the information

27 Exercise 1.Find an existing Infographic See for examples if you can’t find one 2.Identify what graphic or graphics are used (tables, bar charts, pie charts, etc.) 3.Identify the “story” in 1-2 sentences 4.Evaluate the infographic based on PARC principles 5.Identify the supplementary information provided (scale, labels, etc.) 6.Is this a positive or negative example of an inforgraphic?

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