Data Visualization quotes

Data visualization is a powerful tool for reducing the complexity of our data and presenting it in a way that is understandable, insightful, and actionable. We have used data visualization in some form or another since time immemorial, from early caveman paintings to today’s sophisticated information dashboards.

We’ve compiled a list of our ten favorite data visualization quotes that perfectly capture the essence of data visualization. While some experts believe graphs are magical, others compare them to a campfire. Here is what experts have to say about data visualization:

There is a magic in graphs. The profile of a curve reveals in a flash a whole situation — the life history of an epidemic, a panic, or an era of prosperity. The curve informs the mind, awakens the imagination, convinces.
―Henry D. Hubbard

The purpose of visualization is insight, not pictures.
―Ben Shneiderman

The inadequacy of uni-dimensional plotting along a continuum (in this case, the diagonal of a symmetric matrix) inevitably would make “buffer” elements appear non-conformist when in fact, they may be part of an interconnected pattern.
―Jennifer K. McArthur

Numbers have an important story to tell. They rely on you to give them a clear and convincing voice.
―Stephen Few

Visualizations act as a campfire around which we gather to tell stories.
―Al Shalloway

The art and practice of visualizing data are becoming ever more important in bridging the human-computer gap to mediate analytical insight in a meaningful way.
―Edd Dumbill

By visualizing information, we turn it into a landscape that you can explore with your eyes, a sort of information map. And when you’re lost in information, an information map is kind of useful.
―David McCandless

The goal is to turn data into information and information into insight.
―Carly Fiorina

Above all else, show the data.
―Edward Tufte

The greatest value of a picture is when it forces us to notice what we never expected to see.
―John Tukey

Have you got your own favorite data visualization quote? Add it in the comment section below.

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One response on “Top 10 Quotes on Data Visualization

  1. What a great list! Some of my favorites are:

    “Learn data, and you can tell stories that more people don’t even know about yet but are eager to hear.” ~ Nathan Yau

    ” Most of us need to listen to the music to understand how beautiful it is. But often that’s how we present statistics: we just show the notes, we don’t play the music.” ~Hans Rosling

    “You can achieve simplicity in the design of effective charts, graphs and tables by remembering three fundamental principles: restrain, reduce, emphasize.” ~ Garr Reynolds

    Cheers!

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