Thursday 24 October 2013

Data Viz Web Sites

I'm currently leading a procurement project for one of my regular clients. The client has a very valuable manufacturing monitoring system with a dashboard which allows the client's manufacturing staff to monitor production trends on a daily basis - picking up data from a variety of source systems along the product manufacturing lifecycle.

Whilst the client's products all meet their manufacturing specification limits (and, hence, are good to go the distribution channel and consumers), the dashboard uses statistical process control (SPC) rules to provide automatic warnings when one or more production processes are drifting away from their central point of operation. Hence, the client's staff get an early warning and can bring the process back on track before it ever goes wrong.

My client wants to make a step change in their capability with regard to a) ability to perform more complex statistical process control activity, and b) data exploration, analysis and visualisation for circumstances where the root cause of the process drift is not immediately apparent. The step change may require software tools that are more advanced and sophisticated than their current reporting tool can provide. Thus, I'm running a gap analysis of their requirements against their current technology, and I'll be running a product selection exercise if/when gaps are found.

It's an interesting context and an interesting challenge, and I'm looking forward to driving our progress over the next few weeks and months.

To get to the point...

Whilst reviewing the market for visualisation and analytics products, I came across this neat list of visualisation sites on the Guardian web site within their ever interesting Data Store section. None of them are products, so they're no real help with my client's needs, but they are a good source of visualisation ideas. Take a look and tell me what you think...

Of course, no mention of data visualisation is complete without a reference to Hans Rosling's fabulous treatise on health versus wealth for 200 countries over 200 years which I featured back in December 2010.