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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Treemaps

Have been exploring the Treemap data visualization format. It's a means of visualizing relative hierarchical quant values in a fixed space. Well known examples are the Map of the Market and the Newsmap. The Hive Group licenses software to implement the capability. It's also covered in designer Ben Fry's recent Visualizing Data book, with usable code. The U of MD has a test version and some overview papers. Also, IBM's ManyEyes has treemap tools, and a good simple explanation of the method. Surprised that this form is not more widely used for ease of use in dashboard type applications. Does anyone know of additional distinctive examples? ... UPDATE a commenter writes: My company, Lab Escape, has several examples of using treemaps for different uses in our Learning Center on our web site ... Trevor Lohrbeer

1 comment:

Trevor Lohrbeer said...

My company, Lab Escape, has several examples of using treemaps for different uses in our Learning Center on our web site.

Like The Hive Group, we sell SDKs for integrating treemaps into applications, but we also sell desktop and web-based products for standalone analysis and for building dashboards and analytical applications. (Including a free trial if you want to play around with them).

The wonderful thing about treemaps (aka heat maps in the financial world) is that they can be used to visualize so many different types of information. Currently I'd estimate that around 30-40 companies have treemaps embedded in their products with hundreds of thousands of people using them. Though they are often branded as a custom visualization like Matrix Map or Risk Map rather than be called a treemap.