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Stories vs. Statistics. The Stone is a forum for contemporary philosophers and other thinkers on issues both timely and timeless.

Stories vs. Statistics

Half a century ago the British scientist and novelist C. P. Snow bemoaned the estrangement of what he termed the “two cultures” in modern society — the literary and the scientific. These days, there is some reason to celebrate better communication between these domains, if only because of the increasingly visible salience of scientific ideas. Still a gap remains, and so I’d like here to take an oblique look at a few lesser-known contrasts and divisions between subdomains of the two cultures, specifically those between stories and statistics.

I’ll begin by noting that the notions of probability and statistics are not alien to storytelling. With regard to informal statistics we’re a bit like Moliere’s character, who was shocked to find that he’d been speaking prose his whole life. Erin Schell The so-called “conjunction fallacy” suggests another difference between stories and statistics. Data journalism. Articles. How to Become a Data Visualization Expert: A Recipe. In my previous post last week I complained about the state of infovis blogging, arguing that there is not enough freely available quality material around for novices who want to learn, despite new websites and little business pop up every day.

How to Become a Data Visualization Expert: A Recipe

Especially, there is not much guidance for people who want to become visualization experts. So I thought, what if one is attracted by visualization and wants to start? Is there anything on the web that helps taking at least the first few steps? So, I came up with the idea of writing a very small initial guide (recipe) to help people take these first steps. (Of course, I know there’s never one single right path. My recipe is simple: 1) Study a Lot 2) Steal 3) Criticize 4) Produce 5) Seek Discomfort Study a Lot Yes, I said “a lot”. Show Me the Numbers: Start from here. Read these books, take your time, reflect on their advice and techniques and be ready to refer back to them often.

Steal Stealing can be good if done with the right attitude and intent. Journalism in the Age of Data: A Video Report on Data Visualization by Geoff McGhee. Datavisualization.ch. Numérique - Article - Le journalisme de données. Le journalisme de données consiste à exploiter des bases de données, pour en extraire de l’information intelligible et pertinente, présentée de façon attractive.

Numérique - Article - Le journalisme de données

Il vise à donner du sens à d’obscures séries statistiques, à faire émerger des histoires dans de longues séries de données éparses. En cela, il s’inscrit pleinement dans la tradition journalistique consistant à aller chercher de l’information brute pour la présenter de manière adéquate au public. Seulement, il envisage différemment le rôle médiateur du journaliste. Le journalisme de données s’adresse d’abord à l’intelligence visuelle du public, et non à son intelligence verbale.

Pour cela, il peut prendre la forme de bases de données enrichies, d’infographies interactives, de timelines [+] NoteFrises chronologiques [2] et de cartes rich-media [+] NoteA. . [3], d’applications interactives, etc. El Pais a mis au point une animation pour présenter les prévisions du FMI sur l’évolution du PIB des pays occidentaux. . Data journalism and data visualization from the Datablog.

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