Over the past 12 months I have shifted my focus from regular statistical analysis of finding coefficients to explore the rich world of data visualizations. A friend of mine was asking what my mission is, well to change the world maybe? And how so!
In history, the use of images to drive meaning from data dates back to centuries from driving with paper maps and graphing of numbers in the 17th century prior to invention of the pie chart by William Playfair in the early 1800s. Charles Minard found a huge application of images to explaining data and occurrence when he mapped Napoleon’s invasion of Russia – depicting the size of the army as well as the path of Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow. Today, data visualizations have progressed to interactive visuals, audios and videos. Who could have imagined!
Why the heck do we care?
Well I can defend that we do analytics for a number of reasons, one of those reasons is “to win”. Analytics help us ‘see‘ history, ‘find‘ patterns, ‘reveal‘ hidden relationships, ‘get‘ a competitive advantage over situations, ‘provide‘ feedback to stakeholders, investors, sponsors or whoever it is that demand accountability. Visualizations help to drive the result of data analytics to senses in ‘sights and feelings’ with the most crude form of knowing. Would you rather discern the prevalence of mass shooting in US by numbers against states or by sight of flowing bubbles in ‘blood’ colors? We use analytics to force data analysis result down peoples’ throats in a friendly manner. No apologies because no one gets hurt.
So what is this about?
For me, analytics goes beyond coefficients. The passion is about combining the otherwise hidden powers of statistics and visual analytics to model and evaluate policy choices and support business decisions in a fast-changing world. Maybe not to change the world, but to make life less complicated.
I am Wilfred / I came prepared
Truth is, I’ve come a long way and its just the beginning. Portfolio here.