A year and a half ago I was playing around with data visualization toolkits. What I found is that they fell into two buckets: those good for making graphs, and those good for art projects. The ones being used by design and art students were much more interesting and seem to have more possibilities for those of us delivering data visualization rather than fixed graphs.
The problem is that the toolkits / libraries are generally not as usable in a commercial setting. The most interesting one I found is Processing and I'm happy to see that there are now books out on it. I had trouble digging through the original documentation and doing anything interesting. The thing I often find is that the most interesting work is being done well outside the BI market. Here's a nice example of a Processing visualization from Robert Hodgin
Magnetic Ink, Process video from flight404 on Vimeo.
Here are a few other open source visualization tools and libraries I found when I was casting about last year:
Prefuse now ported to ActionScript as Flare - something I can actually use! Beats the pants off of what I was doing in Circos which, now that I've looked again has better tutorials
There are tons of others, but I don't have everything in one place for easy reference. That's what Google is for.
Posted August 5, 2008 1:20 AM
Permalink | 2 Comments |