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J. Webb (Swindon, UK)

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Information Dashboard Design: The Effective Visual Communication of Data
Information Dashboard Design: The Effective Visual Communication of Data
by Stephen Few
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read, recommend for dashboard builders, 28 April 2011
Beautifully presented and illustrated, the author guides you through common mistakes in information dashboard design before highlighting how these may have been improved upon by demonstrating best use of display options, be it the method of graphing or the use of non-data objects. Few discusses key points in relation to how to present information in relation to how human perception works, always striving toward the objective of presenting key facts quickly and efficiently. If you have read "Show Me the Numbers" also by Stephen Few, then you will find much of the content either similar to or a copy of that book, but with some new information added.

Whilst I do think that information dashboard design has come on leaps and bounds in recent years, I do still find examples that demonstrate the negative points Few raises; indeed I find these whilst looking back at some of my previous and current work.

In truth there is very little that the author highlights as new information, rather this is a well thought out and presented collection of best practices. As such, I do not regret buying it, and I would not hesitate to recommend it to others whose work involves the development of information dashboards.

However, if you tend to present tables and graphs as reports instead, then I would suggest "Show Me the Numbers" as a better alternative. Additionally, for a more indepth study into perception and visual information design, works by Edward Tufte or Colin Ware might be of interest. Stephen Few recommends these in his books, and after reading some of their works I can understand why.

Show Me the Numbers: Designing Tables and Graphs to Enlighten
Show Me the Numbers: Designing Tables and Graphs to Enlighten
by Stephen Few
Edition: Hardcover

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have for analysts everywhere!, 27 April 2011
Now I am often referred to with regards to making charts and graphs look good in current and past roles, and it was something I thought I was pretty good at. I accept that we continue to learn everyday, and I thought I would gain a snippet or two from reading this book; how wrong could I have been! I have gained insight from practically every single page and have already started to redesign some of our standard reports to put some of these learnings into place. The key thing this book shows is how aesthetics should never take precedence over emphasis of key data; the objective of the report, table or graph should always be the number one priority.

This book starts from discussing when tables and charts should be used before going on to recommend approaches for each situation. Focus then shifts to general human perception of the different data representations, which seems quite obvious after you've read it, but in truth you'd probably not pay it much attention if you attended school as many years ago as I did.

The book is beautifully bound with high quality paper used and will take its place on my desk at work as a reference for myself, but also in the hope that others will take a look and be inspired to buy their own copies.

Offered by Just Sport and Leisure
Price: 4.98

3.0 out of 5 stars Worked sometimes, 5 Dec 2010
Such a simple concept, I bought this with the understanding that I would be bringing bite relief cream also. I am glad that I did, as this item did not work 100% of the time. When it did work, it was amazing, almost instant relief from the itchiness associated with bites, and interest from other travellers was high. I would say it worked perhaps 60-70% of the time, but certainly required more "clicks" than was in the instructions. I don't understand why it didn't work the other 30-40% of the time, the bites were no worse or plentiful.

Even given it's success rate, it is something I will still take with me on my travels.

Lifeventure Plug Travel Bath / Sink Code 9660
Lifeventure Plug Travel Bath / Sink Code 9660
Offered by Girls Travel Club
Price: 3.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Does the job, 5 Dec 2010
Suitable for a wide range of drain sizes, I never travel without them. Unfortunately, my generous nature means that each trip I return with one less as I "rescue" other travellers from basin washes.

Scoring Points: How Tesco Continues to Win Customer Loyalty
Scoring Points: How Tesco Continues to Win Customer Loyalty
by Clive Humby
Edition: Paperback
Price: 17.64

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read, recommended for all marketers, 5 Dec 2010
Being part of a business looking to commence the construction of a loyalty scheme, I've recently read various books on the subject. This book (along with Loyalty Effect, The: The Hidden Force Behind Growth, Profits, and Lasting Value) is quite probably one of the best I have read. Whilst I do agree with other comments in that there is very little content on the negative elements of the Clubcard scheme, the book certainly highlighted areas for us to focus on in the creation of our own scheme.

Design-Go Dry Phone -
Design-Go Dry Phone -
Price: 4.70

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worked a treat, 27 Jun 2010
This review is from: Design-Go Dry Phone - (Apparel)
As a single traveller, I can't just leave money, cards, phone etc with someone else whilst I take a dip in the pool, hence I bought this product. Well, it worked a treat, not once did it leak, and it held everything I needed it to. I never tried to use my mobile phone whilst in the pack, but to be fair I was on holiday, the phone was for emergencies only - in which case I'd get out of the pool anyway!

My only gripe, and the only reason this is not getting 5 stars, is that it can be very fiddly to open when you have wet fingers. Double edged sword though I guess, because if it was too easy then there's more chance of things getting wet.

Overall, I would not hesitate in recommending this product.

No Title Available

4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Next to useless, 27 Jun 2010
To start with, I did not get bitten once on either of my holidays, but in truth this has been put down to other measures that I took.

Each evening I noticed that there were several mosquitos in my hotel room, so I followed the instructions on this product. However, upon waking in the morning, I noticed there were still mosquitos flying about in the room. Still very much alive, and still very much able to bite if they so chose.

No Title Available

5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect travelling companion, 27 Jun 2010
Whatever you do, don't be put off by the price!

I almost was, but after using this bag in both Cuba and Nigeria, I have to say that it was absolutely worth every penny. No problems in Cuba, but someone did try to snatch my bag from under the table whilst I was eating, and thanks to the fact that it can lock around the table leg, they were unsuccessful!

Despite it's small size, you can actually fit a fair amount into this bag. Perfect for carrying guide book, foreign language book, camera, passport, cash, insect repellents, sun cream and other assorted travel medication. The two bottle holders did look a little silly when full, but they both held a bottle of water each. My only two complaints about this bag is that there is no cover for the water bottles, which means that in the heat in both Cuba and Nigeria, you ended up drinking soup more than water. Also, the catch for the zip for the main compartment was difficult to get to, so often I left the main compartment unlocked and only used it for items that I was less worried about losing.

Still those two complaints aside, this bag really does what it says on the tin, and the number of people who wanted one after they had seen mine was staggering.

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional, Full Version  (PC DVD), 1 User
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional, Full Version (PC DVD), 1 User
Offered by uksoftwareseller
Price: 245.85

31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent product at a great price, 15 July 2009
At first I was a little unsure. Amongst the forums I frequent there has been a lot of buzz over Windows 7; but having seen many failed attempts by Microsoft in the past (having grown up using MS DOS) I was more than a little dubious.

However, after using the release candidate for a month now I can say I was being dubious over nothing.

The interface is very clean and simple, with many of the "errors" of Vista having been corrected. There are a few items which are now harder to find, but these almost don't matter in comparison to the positive changes Microsoft have made. An example is user account control. Now I typically would turn this off in Vista, simply because the prompts are too intrusive and frequent, and turning it off is not really a good idea in terms of security. Well in windows 7 you have more control over how frequently it alerts you of things. However, I have not changed this at all, as it now appears it is more "intelligent", and even leaving it at "out of the box" setup, it provides just the right level of prompts.

If you can afford this, then I'd highly recommend it. Especially if you manage to grab a copy whilst Microsoft are offering it at half price. Be warned though, that due to recent legislation changes in Europe, this version will not come with Internet Explorer (or any web browser). Make sure you download your chosen browser before upgrading your existing operating system.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 14, 2010 8:33 AM BST

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