Visual Explanation of the Week #2: Graphical Algebra

Even a short glance over visual data yields a wealth of information, such as the number of represented objects. The ability to grasp that number in but a moment is called subitizing. Research on the phenomenon has shown that humans can usually identify the quantity of objects up to five, and up to eight with […]

Posted at 1:27 am on July 18, 2006 | 1 comment | Filed Under: cognitive psychology, naive statisticians, visual explanation | Continue reading

Visual Metaphors #1: Time and Causality

Most failures, most success. (Tom Peters‘ Irreducibles) It seems that although most of my beliefs about the visual display of facts aren’t exactly widespread, there are co-conspirators. In the april issue of Juan C. Dürsteler’s newsletter on information visualization, he extends a rather unusual criticism of the widespread time axis: Time, nevertheless is not well […]

Posted at 5:11 pm on July 9, 2006 | Leave a comment | Filed Under: cognitive psychology, skilled statisticians, visual critique | Continue reading



These are the research notes of Pascal Jürgens, student of mass communication in Mainz, Germany. I chart the research field where statistics, visual display of quantitative information, cognitive psychology of numbers and empirical social science overlap.