Visual analytics: quick insights into a world of data
Visual analytics is data analysis characterized by insights that are displayed in an interactive, graphical manner. It is especially helpful in analyzing large, complex data sets.
Data is produced at an incredibly fast rate – faster than most people can analyze and report on it. To solve this problem, a host of data visualization solutions haven been developed to help data scientists and other, even non-technical, professionals discern patterns and connect the dots in an ocean of data.
Visual analytics is nothing more than a modern term for reporting. In the past, there were only a few data sources to analyze. Because everything was extremely fixed-format and predefined, gaining these insights was the responsibility of the IT department. As a result, non-technical professionals often had to wait for long periods of time to receive their reports and/or insights.
Self-service business insights
These disadvantages catalyzed a shift towards ‘self-service analytics’. Such tools enable data to be visualized more easily, simplifying interpretation and decision-making. However, the data still has to be represented in the appropriate way to help users design and deploy their own reports and analyses and make the right decisions. This means that the data architecture and tools portfolio still need to be supported and approved by a company’s IT department.