File Size: 20233 KB
Print Length: 691 pages
Publisher: Springer; 2 edition (January 28, 2006)
Publication Date: January 28, 2006
As the particular other reviewers mention, this specific is NOT a how-to book. It's a much deeper, fundamnetal remedying of just how data and graphics link, and how we symbolize them. So, it's not necessarily as much a "useful" guide, except insofar as it changes the way you put together your next graph.
This book crystalized a lot of concepts I already recognized, though only vaguely and intuitively. Like, a legend and an an axis are really exactly the same thing, and that a stacked club and a pie chart are identical except with regard to the coordinate system utilized.
It's quite a heavy slog to read this guide, so I recommend you select it up and study a couple of pages here and there, and move on the particular issues that catch your own interest.
It's not with regard to everyone, but I think it could make anyone communicate better through charts., This is an unconventional book. It should be of interest to individuals who have to display info in graphic form, yet it is not an average book of that sort. A subset of individuals who enjoy Tufte ( The Visual Show of Quantitative Information, second edition ) or Cleveland ( The particular Elements of Graphing Info , Visualizing Info ) will also take pleasure in this. This book really does not make an effort to coach a person on how to create good graphics, but if that is your goal it attacks a related, important aspect: rules that link the data and the particular graphic. Obviously then, it might be of great attention to computer scientists and theoreticians. The grammar referred to in the book can also be object oriented in style which helps to create the code quite sophisticated. In my instance, I am a "power-user" from the SPSS statistics software bundle, plus the ideas in this specific book are actually partially applied in SPSS since close to 2005 (Version 14. 0). This is not a new user's guide or perhaps a how-to manual for using SPSS. If, however, you already have a new working knowledge of the particular latest SPSS graphics and its related programming language then this book will certainly put that whole method in context, and enormously increase your understanding of the technology "behind the particular scenes". Many technical followers might benefit regardless of their using or not making use of SPSS Statistics.
Unlike Tufte, you will find simply no hand drawn graphics, or illustrations crafted in Flagstone illustrator - they may be both beautiful and effective but such graphics would not belong with this book. All of the particular graphics listed below are created by using a computer and also a grammatical information and arise directly away of a data arranged. Making a graphic sophisticated and clear is the particular work from the designer, the particular purpose of the grammar is to insure of which the graphic is attached to data, also to separate graphics that make perception from graphics that are usually non-sense. To paraphrase the particular book, graphics that are usually grammatically correct may or might not exactly be ugly, yet can never be meaningless.
In a brilliant ultimate chapter the author explains that this famous Minard's Napoleon's march chart (see Tufte) has its own incorrect data, and that Minard took a few liberties using the data. The particular conclusion: a decorative and crafted graphic would not guarantee 100% accuracy. Whereas in order to quote the author, "a graphic without a idea of a variable is not a statistical graphic". So, if you associated with variables available (in an information set) to your viewers you choose it all of which much harder to deceive with graphics. Although Tufte's books have a VERY different style, avoiding lying down with graphics is an important, recurring theme.
So if you are theoretically inclined, and especially when a person are an SPSS consumer, seek out this guide. This is a great partner to the literature on chart aesthetics. Before you decide to jump in, note that this specific book is several hundred or so pages long. SPSS user's should look over the particular "GPL Reference" first to find out if this is a new topic you are willing to dedicate time to., Most of how many other reviewers point out has factual accuracy. But first I must say that the "subset" of individuals who else enjoy CLEVELAND (WILLIAM T. )'s works will take pleasure in the Grammar of Visuals book.
Sorry, but individuals who enjoy TUFTE are usually not potential applicants with regard to this book because Tufte has way too small to say about graphics (despite his books, lectures, which eventually are about $$$ for Tufte). Tufte's main thing is his admonition "don't do chart junk" followed by his 2nd favorite thing: join with him or her and disparage the "cognitive style" of PowerPoint. The particular former is true, yet is not terribly subtle. As for the 2nd, the tool of PowerPoint will not need to be used inside the boring "cognitive style" with bullets and "branding". I for one make a good amount of PowerPoint presentations entirely unlike these.
The summary of "subset"s of people: William S. Cleveland followers: yes, you'll love this specific book; people who mistake Tufte for the ultimate graphical guru probably will locate this book "too much". Remember that the author of the Grammar of Visuals book literally states just how Cleveland wins the citations contest in his guide. No surprise, because Cleveland made many creative advancements for statistical graphics and has also studied graphical perception. (As just ONE of a myriad of examples: residuals are incredibly terribly "mis-read" by our understanding when there is a new steeply sloped curve; recurring in y- direction could be very large, but we observe just a very much smaller perpendicular distance. )
(Finally, in fairness, Tufte offers had two good ideas -- but only two compared to Cleveland's several dozen. Tufte's tics-at-data (for x- and y- separate marginal distributions [essentially 1-D scatterplots made by tics]) and Tufte's white-grid-run-thru-of-bar-plots are his two advantages of any substance. )
OK. Nice bearing with my review which, hence far, has covered the particular Cleveland and Tufte subsets of readers. Moment for the particular Grammar of Graphics guide character itself --without context of being a Cleveland reader or a Tufte Reader.
If you have not experienced reading Cleveland's books (Elements of Graphing Data and/or Visualizing Data), I admit that this guide will be more challenging for you personally.
The above stage aside, you have to know, like some other reviewers said, that this specific book is not a new how-to. Nor is it like Cleveland's books -- chock filled with guideline principles. You can find a good amount of principles inside the book, good results . their size, the CONCENTRATION of principles to pages of text is low.
TYPICALLY THE BEST PERSPECTIVE ON THIS BOOK: The best point of view is to not perspire consuming every little details. Especially skip all the formalisms (even though this is evidently the topic of the particular book! ) Instead, simply enjoy. This is one book definitely to apply your highlighter to. Neglect the formalisms completely. Concentrate on the important points manufactured throughout -- but you'll need to highlight all of them. If you come in order to the book from Cleveland (William S. ) it will be easier that you should spot the important points. Just don't think a person have to learn information and formalisms.
One tip -- Cleveland reader or not -- whenever there is any text suggesting a new perspective, that text might well be calling for your own highlighter -- not necessarily, yet often.
Go for principles, perspectives and ignore formalisms. You'll be more in ease and revel in the guide.
If you think you may do both William T. Cleveland's books AND the particular Grammar of Graphics guide -- no question, perform Cleveland first (Elements of Graphing Data [more basic] and Visualizing Data [more superior statistical questions addressed graphically]).
P. S. I don't recall if some other reviewers mentioned it, yet Wilkinson (author of Sentence structure of Graphics) is originator of the SYSTAT statistical software package., This is a standard text. Outstanding, This book is closely related with the approaching new book "ggplot2" by Hadley Wickham. "ggplot2" is an R package with regard to generating elegant graphics based on the Grammar of Graphics.
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