Some folks were lamenting about how data type and format is one of the first things you must specify when using various visualization tools. Import your data, the software tries to guess the data format without contextual information, and then suggests a handful of chart types.
If you only consider data format to choose your chart type, then yeah, you’re probably approaching the problem too mechanically.
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FlowingData is a never-ending source of information, inspiration and instruction in data, visualization and design and Nathan Yau’s approach to exploring these subjects is both technical and familiar, somewhat similar to a discussion of a shared obsession over beers with a friend.
The tutorials are very helpful to move from "Oooo, cool!" to how to actually DO the cool.
…the inspiration I needed to start learning to code with a view to building more sophisticated and engaging data visualisations.