Feeds

Data visualization: Big Data's hot cousin

Clever coders make data fun and easy, as vendors add tools to catch up

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The next step in data security

Tools of the visualization trade

In either case, Hosken says creating a vizualization of this sort requires many skills

“You need a combination of data mining and data analysis skills,” he says. Hosken is happy to work in Flash or code in Java and says the Rafael Javascript library for vector graphics is useful.

“It helps to have Statistics 101, or at least an appreciation of statistics, scripting ability,” he adds. And then there's the x-factor of being able to “use those tools to create something that takes advantage of human perception.”

Stefaner also has a diverse skillset. He worked in advertising, then studied cognitive science and interface design. Like Hosken he is entirely happy to write code when creating a visualization, and says his broad skills mean he is one of a small pool of people capable of creating advanced visualizations.

“There are only a handful of practitioners. A couple of years ago there were only one or two. Now there are perhaps ten or twenty.”

But more are coming, because the power of visualization has been noticed by software vendors. Microsoft, for example, has added PowerView to SQL Server 2012. Gartner has tracked the addition of similar tools to other enterprise suites, with a June 2011 paper titled Emerging Technology Analysis: Visualization-Based Data Discovery Tools identifying Tibco and SAS as leaders in the field along with newcomers Qlik Tech and Tableau. The paper predicts 30% compound annual growth in the field for five years and significant corporate adoption.

But that doesn't mean the game is up for bespoke visusalizers like Hosken and Stefaner, as Andrew Vande Moere says the field is already advancing beyond screens and into the real world.

“We have already used fashion and clothing that added information – we made a basketball jersey that included information about players. We can place information on objects – appliances could record electricity consumption.

“We can augment architecture with light or wind,” he says. “Information should enrich our physical world.” ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
Profitless Twitter: We're looking to raise $1.5... yes, billion
We'll spend the dosh on transactions, biz stuff 'n' sh*t
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.