Visualization Analysis: How can we read data visualizations?

2019-08-08T18:31:49Z (GMT) by Jacky Lao
This paper presents a question-based framework for analyzing the quality of a visualization
in a general manner. Visualizations are tools that can convey complex ideas and encapsulate
large amounts of data in a relatively small format. These representations can present coherent
narratives and lead readers to conclusions supported by data. At the same time, the intent of the
designer of a visualization will affect the form that the visualization takes, and in doing so, may
lead readers to specific conclusions that the designer desires, regardless of what the data actually
says. Propaganda, for example, has been used to great effect in convincing the general public
of various countries of different narratives. For this reason, I consider the designers’ intent in
addition to the visual elements of a graphic, to form a more holistic picture of what the graphic is
saying.