Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tool: Visual Free

Tools to Visualize Data must have four basic characteristic:
  • Data Source
  • Library of Visual Objects
  • Mechanism of Associating Data with Visual Objects
  • Ability to Filter Data on user-chosen criteria for Visual Rendering
Visualize Free is a free visual analysis tool based encompassing these four characteristic (http://visualizefree.com/). This is developed by InetSoft (http://www.inetsoft.com/). The tool is web based and developed on Java Platform for advanced commercial dashboard and data visualization. To access the tool two initial steps are:
  1. Register to the site: This requires (a) e-mail ID (b) access password and (c) Organization
  2.  Login: Login will use registered e-mail ID and access password.
Datasets for visualization could be one of the following:
  1. Existing datasets already created for a previous Visualization: The sets could be the one
    available in a publically shared library or private ones confined to the user’s Visualizations
  2. User defined dataset: This data set could be Uploaded from the user’s data server. Datasets can be Excel files (both XLS and XLSX) or text (CSV and tab-delimited TXT), with first row containing the column headers.
Creating interactive Visualization:
User has to select choose a base dataset and associate with the new Visualization. The tool used for Visualization is a drag and drop designer, which will open up if ‘Edit’ option of the Visualization is click-selected.

    Fig. 1: Link to Existing Datasets

    Fig.2: Link to Existing Visualizations

All new Visualizations and Datasets, public as well as private to the current user, are available as links in indexed tables. This forms shared developmental resource.

Editing Visualization through Visual Composer:
Visual Composer is an Integrated Drag and Drop Development Tool comprising of two tabs:
(a) Asset Tab
(b) Component Tab

Fig.3: Visual Composer’s Component Tab

Fig.4: Visual Composer’s Asset Tab

The “Asset” comprises of:
  • Global Viewsheets (public-shared)
  • User Viewsheets (private).
These can be dragged and dropped into the new Visualizations being created or edited. The drag-and-drop “Components” comprises of:
  • User defined Dataset associated with the current Visualization
  • Cubes for Data-Models
  • Tool Boxes for:
    • Different Data Views (Tables, Chart etc)
    • Selection Objects (List, Tree, Container etc.)
    • Output Objects (Text, Image, Sliding Scale etc.)
    • Input Objects (Slider, Check Box, Radio Button etc.)
    • Shapes (Line, Rectangle, Oval)
Using these components, it is possible to associate the data to objects (say, chart to a Columns of a CSV dataset) through drag-and-drop method. In effect, a very good data-interfaced interactive Visualization can be created.

Documentation for Visualization Help:
Tree-based help document is available, which is well-constructed with multi-level selection.

                                                       Fig.5: Snapshot of Visual Help

Link to the Tool is here