Classic 1939 book on graphs in its entirety

Sep 24, 2015

Willard Cope Brinton is credited as one of the pioneers of information visualization, and I just found out his 1939 book Graphic Presentation is available in its entirety at the Internet Archive. You can download it in various formats. The book was an update to his previous book from 25 years prior, Graphic Methods for Presenting Facts. It’s also at the Archive.

It’s always fun to read through these older publications. Naturally, there’s the historical significance and pretty graphs, along with tidbits on printing processes and paper (whatever those are).

But they talk about a lot of the same stuff that we do now—perception, narratives, attention, and all that—which always catches me off guard because we tend to think of visualization as this relatively new thing. Then it’s like oh wait, someone did this more than a century ago.

Favorites

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How You Will Die

So far we’ve seen when you will die and how other people tend to die. Now let’s put the two together to see how and when you will die, given your sex, race, and age.

A Day in the Life of Americans

I wanted to see how daily patterns emerge at the individual level and how a person’s entire day plays out. So I simulated 1,000 of them.

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