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Visual Explanations: Images and Quantities, Evidence and Narrative

by Edward R. Tufte

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3,162154,234 (4.31)22
This book describes design strategies - the proper arrangement in space and time of images, words, and numbers - for presenting information about motion, process, mechanism, cause and effect.
  1. 30
    Visual and Statistical Thinking: Displays of Evidence for Decision Making by Edward R. Tufte (cfranco)
    cfranco: The booklet "Visual and Statistical Thinking : Displays of Evidence for Making Decisions" is a reproduction of the chapter 2 of the book "Visual Explanations: Images and Quantities, Evidence and Narrative". Therefore, there is no need to read both of them, read only the "Visual Explanations" book.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
During years of combing thru data visualization books, I had seen this book mentioned various times. Finally found a used, hardbound edition in excellent quality. I look forward to paging thru the book in detail during a break.
  usma83 | May 7, 2023 |
I got a lot less out of this than I did from The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, which is to say still a fair amount. I thought it was an enjoyable read nonetheless and certainly worth spending a few evenings on. The main thrust of the book seemed to be that it's important to show the reader information in a way that maximally enhances their understanding. Beyond that there's a list of examples of what to do and not do, and I'll remember those down the line when I'm looking at or making pictures. ( )
  haagen_daz | Jun 6, 2019 |
156 p.
  BmoreMetroCouncil | Feb 9, 2017 |
An eye-opening read. As a linguistic who deals with databases, this book dramatically improved my writing and design of graphics for publication. ( )
  KirkLowery | Mar 4, 2014 |
Wow, is this an excellent book. It helped my presentation of data skills, and beefed up the Power Point approach as well. I abhor presentations, as the facts are what I am after. The ability to marry up prose with data and present, this is an important skill for all today. The nicest surprise was the ability to understand how to maximize color in a presentation of information. ( )
1 vote shdawson | Nov 19, 2012 |
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Categories such as time, space, cause, and number represent the most general relations which exist between things; surpassing all our other ideas in extension, they dominate all the details of our intellectual life. If humankind did not agree upon these essential ideas at every moment, if they did not have the same conception of time, space, cause, and number, all contact between their minds would be impossible - Emile Durkheim, Les formes elementaires de la vie religieuse (Paris 1912), pp. 22-23
For my teachers, for many years Virginia James Tufte, Raymond E. Wolfinger, Lincoln Moses, Richard A. Brody, Paul Ekman, Robert A. Dahl, Stanley Kelley Jr. John W. Tukey, Frederick Mosteller, Robert K. Merton, Cuthbert Daniel, Howard I. Gralla, Inge Druckrey, Tom Prichard
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Our thinking is filled with assessments of quantity, an approximate or exact sense of number, amount, size, scale.
In the study of perception, just noticeable differences measure the very limits of human abilities to detect the faintest of differences between, say two adjacent colors almost exactly alike in a continuous spectrum of 100,000 colors. Ad Reinhardt’s paintings rely on these vaporous distinctions, with some gradations revealing themselves only after many minutes of focused viewing. This is fine for art but not for data. Rather than operating at such an exquisite threshold of perceptual acuity, data displays must be clear, assured, reliable, sturdy. In designing information, then, the idea is to us just notable differences, visual elements that make a clear difference by no more – contrasts that are definite, effective, and minimal.
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This book describes design strategies - the proper arrangement in space and time of images, words, and numbers - for presenting information about motion, process, mechanism, cause and effect.

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