Expert Opinion: Data Visualization
— February 19, 2018
By Kristen Sosulski
First, there’s a lot more data available in the world; we are living the era of big data. From individuals to governments, there is a movement toward sharing data for public good. Platforms like Kaggle provide open data sets and a community to explore data, write and share code, and enter machine learning competitions. All of the services we employ, from AT&T to American Express, collect, mine, and share our data.
Second, software to analyze and visualize data is ubiquitous. Tableau, for example, is designed for the explicit purpose of visualizing data. It’s only been available for both Mac and PC users since 2014. Programming languages such as Python and R have packages, such as ggplot2 and plot.ly, that make the process of data visualization straightforward and manageable, even for non-programmers. Charts are no longer limited to static displays; they are dynamic, interactive, and animated.
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Kristen Sosulski is a Clinical AssociateProfessor of Information, Operations & Management Sciences and the Director of Education for the W.R. Berkley Innovation Lab