To begin this episode I want to introduce you to a couple of historical ideas on best practices in graphical data presentation—or using the more modern term, data visualization. (The peculiar title I’ve chosen comes from this history. Read on to see what it means.) Then I’ll step through a redesign of a bar chart… Read More Bad Arrangements to Place Before School Children
Nowadays libraries aspire to be data-driven. Almost everyone agrees that collecting and using data to improve organizational performance is a good thing. Implied in the various regimens promoting this idea (library assessment, managing-for-results, evidence-based practice, quality management, etc.) is the need for practicing two virtues: patience and determination. These virtues happen also to be part… Read More Data Detour
The graphic below is a variant of one I blogged about in my prior entry. Its designers added a storm to create what might be called an inclement tug-of-war. This version of the graphic is from the Libraries Connect Communities: Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study 2011-2012 (PLFTAS) press kit. Both versions communicate this… Read More Oh, The Weather Outside Is Frightful!
I admit it. I’ve been suffering from a case of statistician’s block. No inspiring ideas for this blog have presented themselves since July. Well, actually, a couple did surface but I resisted them. Very recently, though, the irresistible “infographic” shown here came to my attention. I am therefore pleased to return to my keyboard to… Read More Statistical Hearsay
A while back, in his 21st Century Library Blog Steve Matthews commented on some data appearing in a report entitled The Library in the City published by the PEW Charitable Trusts Philadelphia Research Initiative. Dr. Matthews was puzzled by an inconsistency between statistical trends highlighted in the report and standard per capita circulation, visits, and… Read More Honest-to-Goodness Transformation
I recently attended a library webinar where the question of the difference between outputs and outcomes came up. The main idea was that outputs are programs and services an organization delivers, whereas outcomes are changes that occur in recipients, or their life situations, as a result of having received program services. Another was that outputs… Read More Assessment’s Top Models
After so much stuff about evaluation theory and practice in this blog, it’s time for some fun! And what better fun is there than fun with numbers?1 Let’s begin our diversion with a graph from my prior post shown here. Looking closely, notice how some of the gold circles lie in neat, parallel bands. These… Read More Fun with Numbers