February Edition: All Eyes on Data Visualization
With a boost to your visualization skills you can tell better stories—and reach better decisions.
“Data storytelling” means different things to different people; the way a data scientist shares their findings, predictions, and insights will vary greatly depending on the context. If there’s one common denominator to all effective data stories, though, it’s the power of a good visual. Maybe it’s the way our brains are wired, or our reluctance to read 100-page reports; maybe charts and plots are just inherently… fun?
Either way, seasoned data practitioners keep returning to the same conclusion: the fanciest ML model using the most cutting-edge algorithms won’t amount to much if your colleagues and stakeholders don’t get why it matters. And often, the fastest way to help them see the light is with well-crafted images. So this month, we’ve collected some of our best recent articles focusing on the strategy and practice of data visualization.
As you all probably know already, it’s a massive topic—one where there’s always more to learn and to explore. So take this wide-ranging selection as a starting point, a trailhead for a longer journey. If you’ve read (or written!) another post around data visualization that you’d like to share with our community, please do—that’s what comments are for!
A great place to start, with a thorough breakdown of the proposed framework using an example, and with multiple screenshots included.
By Anushiya Thevapalan (6 minutes)
A short excursion into the world of human visual-information processing.
By Elena V Kazakova (13 minutes)
Learn about the Viz for Social Good volunteers, gain helpful tips for your next visualization, and find out how to get involved.
By Payal Patel (7 minutes)
The guide to plotting scatter plots, heat maps, ridgeline plots, and line graphs in Python.
By Michael Zabolocki (8 minutes)
There are powerful visualization tools available for data scientists these days, but you need to ensure you make the most out of them.
By Tessa Xie (6 minutes)
An overview of the ways good-looking visualizations can still lead us astray — and how we can and should fix them.
By Maarten Grootendorst (6 minutes)
An open-source package for decision tree visualization and model interpretation.
By Parul Pandey (7 minutes)
Plotting location data of Indonesian volcanoes into a map using Folium.
By Lia Ristiana (5 minutes)
Using the no-code diagrams.net tool to showcase your deep learning models with diagram visualizations.
By Kenneth Leung (5 minutes)
Kickstart your plotting journey with LaTeX using 5 fundamental plot variations.
By Aruna Pisharody (18 minutes)
Who needs GIS when you can build eye-catching 3D topography maps with Python?
By Adam Symington (8 minutes)
Bonus picks if you’re looking to inject your visualizations with a bit more fun:
We hope you enjoyed our selection this month—if you’re ever hungry for more, be sure to browse our Data Visualization page, where you’ll find our latest contributions on this topic.
Before we sign off, please join us in welcoming the fantastic new authors who published their first articles on TDS in the past month— they include Mateo Suffern, Meera Sharma, Haseeb Kamal, Christopher Gerling, Akashkadel, Roc Reguant, Nico Van den Hooff, Suneeta Mall, Luca Bigon, Adam Symington, Kostas Skoularikis, Nicolas Jaccard, Christopher Ariza, Jacob H. Marquez, Tan Nian Wei, Nazia Shahrin, Chuck Connell, Zain Ahmed, Francisco Santos, Ritvik Kuila, Y. Natsume, Bryant Sheehy, Vinícius Trevisan, Thomas Dybdahl Ahle, Matthew Dawson-Paver, Thomas Rialan, Arjun Balasubramanian, Charlie O'Neill, Suela Isaj, Brianna King, Kay Jan Wong, Holly Dalligan, Andrea Gustafsen, Rajesh Sigdel, Nikolay Manchev, Obed Sims, Rob Carter, Lifu Deng, Loris Michel, Brian Roepke, Gabriel Müller, Chris Hughes, Gerry Christian Ongko, Francesco Marini, Jaren R Haber, Lia Ristiana, Kathleen Lara, Tamer Tevetoglu, Mabel González Castellanos, Pau Giró, Eileen Pangu, Ella sheer, Mikkel Dengsøe, Lydia Nemec, Thanakorn Panyapiang, Maja Pavlovic, Christian Kruschel, Leah Simpson and Ray McLendon, and many more. If you, too, would like to share your work with us, you can!