Visualizing Time

Many thanks to the folks at O’Reilly for organizing and sponsoring the webcast “It’s About Time: Using Temporal Visualization Techniques to Give Data More Meaning and Context” with Hunter Whitney. Here’s [O’Reilly’s description][]:

> We typically don’t give a moment’s thought to the timing and sequence of most of life’s activities and events, but time and order play a significant role in much of what we do. Further, the overlap between one series of events and another can reveal complex patterns and prompt important insights, once detected. However, most database and visual analytics tools are not equipped to reveal the meaning and context that nuanced time representations can provide. Temporal visualizations can shed new light on many areas from healthcare to cybersecurity to sports, to name a few.
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> This webcast will include key ideas, techniques, and practical applications to represent and explore event sequences and their temporal patterns. To illustrate these ideas, a visualization tool called EventFlow will be demonstrated by researchers at the University of Maryland’s Human-Computer Interaction Lab, where the tool is being developed.

Here are links both from the presentation and from the group chat:

* The book [Visualization of Time-Oriented Data][] “starts with an introduction to visualization and a number of historical examples of visual representations. At its core, the book presents and discusses a systematic view of the visualization of time-oriented data.”
* [EventFlow][] is software designed by UMD’s HCIL to help hospitals visualize patient-based workflows: what got done when and in what sequence. (It looks very complicated and very specific, but I wonder if it couldn’t be bent to other purposes.)
* The [Wind Map][] is the coolest thing I have seen in a long time.
* [Merely a Node][] has some examples by Whitney.
* A nice example of being able to compare [months][].
* Don’t forget [Google Charts][].

[O’Reilly’s description]: http://www.oreilly.com/pub/e/3139
[Visualization of Time-Oriented Data]: http://timeviz.net
[EventFlow]: http://www.cs.umd.edu/hcil/eventflow/
[Wind Map]: http://hint.fm/wind/
[Merely a Node]: http://www.merelyanode.com/2014/09/16/temporal-data-examples-from-hunter-whitney/
[months]: http://co2-radar.mybluemix.net/map/AB-aq-history.html
[Google Charts]: https://developers.google.com/chart/interactive/docs/gallery/motionchart

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