I am reading Edward Tufte's The Visual Display of Quantitative Information: Second Edition. It is one of the greatest books on data visualization, infographics, and space-time-data representation. I just finished the first chapter of the book; Graphical Excellence. Tufte defines it as:
graphical excellence is the well-designed presentation of interesting data - a matter of substance, of statistics, and of design.
He writes, "graphical excellence consists of complex ideas communicated with clarity, precision, and efficiency. Graphical excellence is that which gives to the viewer the greatest number of ideas in the shortest time with the least ink in the smallest space. Graphical excellence is nearly always multivariate. And graphical excellence requires telling the truth about the data.
I first learned about Edward Tufte and his book after reading through Bret Victor's Links page on his beautifully designed website. From what I've read on the web, Bret is a multivariate design guru occupying the 21st century with an impressive catalog of productions. Furthermore, I have written about him before.
And as a final note, I am going to a presentation on complex data visualization in Salt Lake City's Public Library this Saturday. The presentation is being given by Miriah Meyer at the Salt Lake Mini-Maker Faire. I'm excited to attend, interact, and frolic with artists, engineers, visionaries, geographers, and intellects alike. Call or e-mail me if you would like to join...