Posted by: bluesyemre | July 25, 2013

Why you should never trust a data visualisation by John Burn-Murdoch

Religion scatter plots

Data visualisation is a wonderful tool and an extremely efficient way of communicating a message. But what if the message is wrong? First of all, let me be clear: the headline of this article is a reference to Pete Warden’s post, and should be read in the same way – as a caution against blind acceptance, rather than the wholesale condemnation of data visualisation. An excellent blogpost has been receiving a lot of attention over the last week. Pete Warden, an experienced data scientist and author for O’Reilly on all things data, writes:
  • The wonderful thing about being a data scientist is that I get all of the credibility of genuine science, with none of the irritating peer review or reproducibility worries … I thought I was publishing an entertaining view of some data I’d extracted, but it was treated like a scientific study.

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