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Reference at the Metcalf 2018: Digging into data visualisation


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Presentation by Kate LeMay to the 2018 Reference @ the Metcalfe seminar for New South Wales public library reference and information services staff on 17 May 2018

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Reference at the Metcalf 2018: Digging into data visualisation

  1. 1. Kate LeMay Digging into Data Visualisation Senior Research Data Specialist 17 May 2018
  2. 2. What is a visualisation? A visual explanation Anything that helps us understand something by looking at it
  3. 3. Why have visualisations?
  4. 4. Anscombe’s quartet
  5. 5. Anscombe’s quartet
  6. 6. Principals for graphical displays Edward Tufte The Visual Display of Quantitative Information (second edition) • Show the data • Induce the viewer to think about the substance rather than the methodology • Avoid distorting what the data have to say • Present many numbers in a small space • Make large datasets coherent • Reveal the data at several levels of detail from a broad overview to the fine structure
  7. 7. Present many numbers in a small space 640 x 480 x 117 = 35,942,400
  8. 8. Tell a story
  9. 9. Tell a story Charting culture
  10. 10. Tell a story American football injuries
  11. 11. Tell a story Hans Rosling's 200 Countries, 200 Years, 4 Minutes - The Joy of Stats - BBC Four
  12. 12. What story could you tell with visualisation? • Services provided • Reporting • To funding body • Internal (decision making) • ‘Advertising’ to customers • Data your council owns • e.g. ‘Understanding your council’ from Audit office of NSW • New service delivery models: four councils using open data for service redesign (UK) • NSW Government data
  13. 13. Some good techniques to use Natural mappings
  14. 14. Highlight relevant information Some good techniques to use
  15. 15. Some good techniques to use Make comparisons clear
  16. 16. Some good techniques to use Make the scale clear
  17. 17. Colour should add meaning Some good techniques to use
  18. 18. …and when colour doesn’t add meaning
  19. 19. Some good techniques to use Use conventions
  20. 20. Some tools for data visualisation • Excel, Google Charts, Google Fusion Tables, R, Python, Tableau • Open data visualisation tools • Some simple tips on how to make your charts and graphs look good • Just google data visualisation! SO MANY RESOURCES
  21. 21. Some helpful references • Developing data visualisation literacy • Data Visualization: A Guide to Visual Storytelling for Libraries. Edited by Lauren Magnuson, editor. . Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield; 2016. 211 p. ISBN: 978-1-4422-7110-4. • So you want to be a Data Visualization Librarian? • How the Brooklyn Public Library used data visualization to build a better library
  22. 22. Interested? Want more data skills? Library Carpentry Data savvy librarians gain familiarity with the datasets, understand technical methods and techniques, and speak multiple disciplinary languages allowing them to work more closely with researchers or the public.
  23. 23. Senior Research Data Specialist Kate LeMay With the exception of third party images or where otherwise indicated, this work is licensed under the Creative Commons 4.0 International Attribution Licence. ANDS, Nectar and RDS are supported by the Australian Government through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy Program (NCRIS). With thanks to Martin Schweitzer