Good book recommendations on visualizations?

rfuentealbarfuentealba Moderator, RapidMiner Certified Analyst, Member, University Professor Posts: 568 Unicorn
edited December 2018 in Help

Hello, World!


I am in a dilemma here: as an open source developer skilled in command line programming, I'm used to read strange things such as cat data.csv | cut -d, -f4 | sort | uniq or Ruby one-liners that can send a rocket to the moon. As a DBA, I'm very comfortable with reading data directly from database tables, understanding how it moves, and I developed some kind of sixth sense to understand things by looking at results; and as a Web developer (yeah, I'm more comfortable with CSS than with Python/R...), I usually get directions on what kinds of charts are required in certain situations, as more often than not, these are basic charts that I can do with Chart.js or Highcharts.


The thing is that I spent some time working with the Turbo Prep feature, and though my impression about it is that it is the best thing ever since sliced bread and the Auto Model feature, when it comes to creating charts on data, I just blocked because I don't know how to create a chart by myself, besides the typical scatter, bar and pie charts. All other chart types are meaningless to me, and after a week struggling to understand Tableau, this is just... frustrating. I'm just not a visual person, I think.


I made a few quick searches on Google and could not get past the "data visualization 101". I'm pretty sure that there is interesting information out there about visualization but it's like asking my 3-year old daughter to read about quantum physics: not knowing anything about the topic it is pretty difficult to decide on what is a good reading and what isn't. Hence I'm looking for validated responses from people with way more experience than me, rather than asking you to do my job:


So here it is: is there any book recommendation, blog, etc., that I can read/watch to learn the basics of visualization that can teach me how to build a proper chart according to the information I have?


I appreciate your answers. Thanks in advance!


All the best,



Best Answer


  • Options
    rfuentealbarfuentealba Moderator, RapidMiner Certified Analyst, Member, University Professor Posts: 568 Unicorn

    Hello, sensei @Telcontar120!


    Thanks for the books, they look great! I appreciate the mentions of Edward Tufte and Nathan Yau too: great for human supervised learning. I think I'm going to fall on a buying spree after this question.


    I definitely owe you beers. Thanks, mate!

Sign In or Register to comment.