15Designing Data Visualizations

Data visualization, when done well, allows you to reveal patterns in your data and communicate insights to your audience. This chapter describes the conceptual and design skills necessary to craft effective and expressive visual representations of your data. In doing so, it introduces skills for each of the following steps in the visualization process:

  1. Understanding the purpose of visualization

  2. Selecting a visual layout based on your question and data type

  3. Choosing optimal graphical encodings for your variables

  4. Identifying visualizations that are able to express your data

  5. Improving the aesthetics (i.e., making it readable and informative)

15.1 The Purpose of Visualization

“The purpose of visualization is insight, ...

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