An Introduction to D3.js: From Scattered to Scatterplot Video by Scott Murray via O’Reilly Media Review

An Introduction to D3.js: From Scattered to Scatterplot video by Scott Murray goes into my favourite educational products list, pity GoodReads has no videos section. 

No wonder, Scott is an assistant professor at USF, and a code artist: just point your modern browser to his blog http://alignedleft.com! By the way, I happened to watch him presenting at one of the O’Reilly’s free webcasts on D3 and was impressed very much by Scott’s teaching abilities, the depth of technical knowledge and of course his data visualizations. To confess, to me, Scott represents the next generation of teachers: computer and technology savvy professionals who know a lot outside of one’s teaching domain.

But OK, enough about my impressions, I am here to convey to my dear reader that this video product is superb. It was first I ever watched from O’Reilly frankly, but Scott and D3 both rock! 

More about the video course now, or let’s talk in general about educational videos: they are a great idea! Why we don’t have enough of them? 

So, this video with its runtime at almost 3 hours is one of the most effective ones that can put you on ice, quick, err… I meant plotting your visualizations.

The course covers the very basics, initially, so no intimidation involved, it starts gently, after all Scott is not that kind of a swim teacher who throws one’s students into a rough ocean… well, despite the course involves a Mac and MAMP the video demonstrates techniques that will run on Windows 7 or newer and most Linux distributions. The only nuance – you have to run a modern browser, and it is reasonable demand for a JavaScript library which D3 is.

The course gradually takes you above basics where you start feeling empowered, this happened to me at ‘Transitions’. One note to Scott: I would love to have more exercises after the advanced parts.

Even more fun, and advanced techniques are covered toward the end as Scales and Axes, and it all ends like at Cirque DuSoleil with a fantastic loud boom: a very cool data visualization that no one would be ashamed of to boast with to a friend! And it was my favourite part, too. The course has very sensible sections, easy to download even to an older iPad or Android tablet, just relax and absorb the cool skills!

I feel wanting sharing with you it made me itch to start visualizing data at work (and as a database pro I have plenty 🙂 and at home (if my wife does not retract her permission). I hope you get the same itch.

Verdict: 5 out of 5 (can I give 10?).

Disclaimer: I received this video free of charge as part of O’Reilly’s blogger review program.

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Posted on June 4, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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