Monday, February 3, 2014

Video tutorial about d3.js for visualization

I'm probably very late on this, so don't laugh at me if you knew about it already. For the past couple of days I've been watching a long (20 video clips!) introduction to d3.jsMike Bostock's Javascript library for interactive data visualization.

The videos were uploaded to YouTube 10 months ago by someone called d3vienno. I tried to track him down. I sent him an e-mail and did a Google search that returned several results, none of them very helpful. This is someone who says about himself: "Just a random Swedish guy obsessed with D3.js, trying to share his (limited) knowledge." Well, thanks for that, sir. So far, I've gone through the first 7 videos and they are good.

In case you're planning to get started with d3.js, I'd recommend that you first learn some HTML, CSS, and Javascript. The videos talk about things like variables, functions, arrays, selectors, the DOM, etc., and you need to know what they are. Also, you may want to take a look at Scott Murray's book, Interactive Data Visualization for the Web.* Combined with these videos and with the educational resources available in the d3 website itself, you should have enough stuff to have fun for a while.

(UPDATE: d3vienno has answered. His name is Robin Lindeborg. He's a Swedish data journalist. Follow him on Twitter and say thanks!)

*Scott and I are thinking about teaching a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) together at the end of 2014 or beginning of 2015. We'll keep you posted on this. It should be fun.