Digital data visualizations support the conveyance of complex information and relational interactions between various types of data. Visualizations refer to image types that convey complex information in a way that’s more easily understandable by the users of that information.
1 D Visualizations
One-dimensional visualizations are those that are highly miniaturized information types. These are one-pixel in size,
2D Data Visualizations
Common two-dimensional visualizations (that exist on the x- and y- axes) consist of tables, charts, graphs, photos, blueprints, diagrams, maps, and other types of information. Video also contain 2D data.
Data elements in 2D visualizations may be embedded in colors, symbols, text, legends, cross-references, and other elements.
Some 2D visualizations are used for brainstorming, such as mind-maps, bubble diagrams, lists, and other types of information captures.
3D Data Visualizations
Three-dimensional data visualizations (on the x, y and z axes) often combine complex data sets. These may be 3D scattergraphs or bar graphs. 3D data visualizations may be photo-realistic or artificial, such as 3D images extrapolated from 2D flat-image captures. 3D node-link structures may show the relationships between various types of information.
4D Data Visualizations
The fourth dimension in digital imagery refers to 3D imagery but with the addition of motion. These 4D data images may include volumetric flows (of liquids, lava, and gasses), through simulated space. 3D avatars and bots also may be embodied through 4D in terms of 3D bodies with expressive movements.
Data visualizations communicate rich types of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed types of information. These may involve different ranges of measures. These may show possible causal relationships. These may project into the future in terms of input parameters.
Many new types of data visualizations have emerged with the use of digital Web-distributed images—such as heat maps, interactive informational graphics, deformable imagery, and other complex visualizations. The application of digital design elements have made visualizations of data ever more complex.
“Data Visualization.” (Wikipedia): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_visualization
“Data Visualization: Modern Approaches” (Smashing Magazine): http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2007/08/02/data-visualization-modern-approaches/
“Data Visualization and Infographics” (Smashing Magazine): http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2008/01/14/monday-inspiration-data-visualization-and-infographics/
“Data Visualization” (Wolfram Mathematica Documentation Center): http://reference.wolfram.com/mathematica/guide/DataVisualization.html
“Flowing Data”: http://flowingdata.com/