May: Data Visualization for Fun and Profit with Julie Steele
Infographics and other data visualizations are becoming ubiquitous: in newspapers, journals, blogs, and corporate websites. Visualization is a language just like any other, which is to say that it’s a way of encoding information and ideas for transmission from one human brain to another. Like any language, it’s not a perfect encoding, but by following some basic principles you can become a more fluent designer and reader. We’ll take a look at some basic design principles, how they can be used wisely, and how they can be used (accidentally or on purpose) to trick the brain.
If you’ve been interested in creating data visualizations of your own, or if some graphics you’ve seen as a reader have set off your spidey sense and you’re not sure why, this talk will help you understand how visual cues communicate information and why they say what they say. Once you understand these principles, you’ll be much better equipped to send and receive visual messages based on large amounts of data — whether you use your powers for good or evil is up to you.
Julie Steele is the Content Editor for Strata at O’Reilly Media. She is co-author of Beautiful Visualization and Designing Data Visualizations. She finds beauty in exploring complex systems, and thinks in metaphors. The best part of her day is finding patterns across verticals and traditional silos, and connecting people who are working on similar problems in seemingly unrelated areas. She is particularly drawn to the visual medium as a way to understand and transmit information.
Julie holds a Master’s degree in Political Science (International Relations) from Rutgers University in Newark. She lives in New York City with her husband and cat, where she cooks, reads, designs, and practices yoga. You can find her blogging occasionally for O’Reilly Radar or on Twitter.
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