Today's blog post gives a quick overview of an often-overlooked and underused tool – data visualization.
"The greatest value of a picture is when it forces us to notice what we never expected to see." – John Tukey
This phrase by John Tukey encapsulates the core essence of visualization and its transformative potential.
Now, you might wonder, what does visualization really mean? Visualization is an information graphic that primarily shows measurable information. The construction of visualizations is based on established principles that can be reused across various scenarios.
The primary objective of visualization is to transpose data into visual patterns that can be easily processed and interpreted by the human brain. This process significantly enhances the comprehensibility of information, making it more digestible and accessible to the audience.
Daniel Kahneman, in his book "Thinking Fast and Slow", illustrates the concept of two cognitive systems – System 1 and System 2.
System 1 corresponds to our intuitive, automatic, and fast-paced thinking.
System 2 relates to slower, deliberate, and analytical thought processes.
Data visualizations are the perfect marriage of text and images, engaging both of these systems. On one hand, they allow for immediate recognition of overarching patterns and outliers (System 1 thinking). On the other hand, they also facilitate a more in-depth exploration of details, analyses, comparisons, and more, catering to our System 2 thinking.
This mix of text and graphics optimizes how we process information, fostering a deeper understanding than standalone text or image-based communications ever could. Bringing visualizations into your legal work can make information more approachable and easier to understand.
This is your sign to start using visualizations in your work if you haven't done that before.
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