Chapter 1The World of Data Visualization

When thinking about data visualization, it's hard to resist the comparison to natural metamorphosis. Consider raw data as the caterpillar: functional, multi-faceted, able to get from here to there, but a little ungainly and really appreciated only by a select few. After data is transformed via visualization, it becomes the butterfly: sleek, agile, and highly recognizable to the point of inspiring and evoking an emotional response. The world of data visualization is an ecosystem unto itself, constantly spawning new nodes of details that—under the proper nourishing conditions—evolve into relatable depictions that consolidate concepts into an understandable, and hopefully compelling, form.

And where does the web professional fit in this metaphor? Why, they are the spinners and caretakers of the cocoon that transforms raw numbers into meaningful representation, of course. Putting the linguistic paraphrasing aside, web designers and developers are a vital component in visualizing data. Naturally, the current and evolving technological landscape has made this role possible—and increasingly efficient.

Overall, JavaScript and jQuery for Data Analysis and Visualization serves as a practical field guide to the robust world of ...

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