Facet: The Recursive Approach to Visualization

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Data visualization and data stores can be thought of as two sides of the same coin. Visualizations, if expressed correctly, can drive the database queries needed to tell the story in question. Today, in practice, visualization is the result of a programmer writing the
necessary data queries, munging the data, and writing the rendering code. This requires a sophisticated programming skill set across data querying, data transformation and integration, and user interface design.

This session will discuss an approach to developing a language that describes both visualization and database queries. We will explore how recursive application of the split-apply-combine principle popularized by Hadley Wickham (http://www.jstatsoft.org/v40/i01) can be used to describe both the structure of a visualization and a database query to serve that visualization. This approach benefits and empowers both developers and business users, especially as a way to quickly explore new data sets.

Photo of Vadim Ogievetsky

Vadim Ogievetsky


Vadim Ogievetsky is a frontend developer at Metamarkets where he uses D3.js in a production, client-facing environment. Prior to Metamarkets, in 2008, he received a BA degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from Oxford University and, in 2011, graduated from Stanford University with a Master’s degree in Computer Science specializing in Human Computer Interaction. While at Stanford he was part of the Data Visualization group where he contributed to Protovis. His open-source development is now focused on DVL, a reactive data
flow library for dynamic data visualization built on top of D3.js.


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