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Beautiful Data: The Stories Behind Elegant Data Solutions (Theory In Practice, #31)
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Beautiful Data: The Stories Behind Elegant Data Solutions (Theory In Practice, #31)

3.60  ·  Rating Details  ·  205 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
In this insightful book, you'll learn from the best data practitioners in the field just how wide-ranging -- and beautiful -- working with data can be. Join 39 contributors as they explain how they developed simple and elegant solutions on projects ranging from the Mars lander to a Radiohead video.
With Beautiful Data, you will: Explore the opportunities and challenges in
Paperback, First Edition, 384 pages
Published July 28th 2009 by O'Reilly Media (first published January 1st 2009)
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Bastian Greshake
Oct 24, 2014 Bastian Greshake rated it really liked it
A wide array of anecdotes of how people are working with data, from creating survey that people actually take, over to doing music videos with Radiohead and LiDAR and genomics. Fun to read if you deal with data for yourself all day, giving some ideas of what to incorporate into your own workflow.
Dec 21, 2014 Vadiraj rated it it was amazing
Shelves: i-own, reference
Database to Dataspace, Story of Large scale DB at Facebook
"Beautiful Data" is a collection of essays on data; how people have transformed it, worked within its confines, and offers a glimpse of where we might go. Many of the essays are wonderful snippets into how some people perceive data while others fall flat. Overall its a mostly enjoyable read that helps open up your mind to new potentials.

First a disclaimer; I am not a data person. However I've been involved, fairly heavily, in the data field. In the parlance of the world, I'm a back end person.
Sundarraj Kaushik
Nov 25, 2013 Sundarraj Kaushik rated it liked it
Beautiful Data Edited by Toby Segaran and Jeff Hammerbacher
The first chapter is a description of two projects by Yahoo. The first one captures the area throug which the user is travelling. The aim is to show the user how much of pollution the user has been subject to. The challenge was to show the exposure levels along with the movements and stopping of the user. A variety of techniques were used before finally arriving at a way of overlaying the exposure as a coloured line and showing the locat
Radovan Kavický
Dec 28, 2015 Radovan Kavický rated it really liked it
Shelves: datavis
This is a collection of 20 different stories about data - gathering, planning, interpreting, storing, visualizing, etc.

The case study methodology points out the necessity of designing all phases of the data capture, processing, analysis and representation process around the goals, open questions and constraints of the client organization, or user/consumer of the data whose decisions are being informed. The thinking and design process behind these cases of beautiful data are fully described--this
John Hieb
May 13, 2016 John Hieb rated it really liked it
As expected, some chapters were a bit dated, but there is a lot of great exploration of data related topics.
Andrew Magee
Jul 18, 2014 Andrew Magee rated it liked it
Lots of interesting stuff, though lots of annoying and tiresome filler.
Vasil Kolev
Jul 16, 2011 Vasil Kolev rated it really liked it
The book has three kinds of chapters - crap, somewhat OK and amazing.

The bad chapters are hand-waving and nothing new or interesting, mostly fodder, but are easy to spot. The amazing on the other hand (like the one by Peter Norvig) give you some great insights and ideas what can be done, and show it very well.

Also, some people over-use the word 'beautiful' which makes them sound like a (very) bad love poem.
Andrew Doran
Mar 29, 2014 Andrew Doran rated it really liked it
Thought-provoking collection of essays about different aspects of data. The book was a bit slow to start but soon picked up and covered a variety of thought-provoking topics. Although I feel that it just scratched the surface and the whole book isn't greater than the sum of its parts, frequent changes of subject with each chapter worked to its benefit and kept me interested.
Apr 01, 2011 Johan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
This one's a keeper. An excellent book offering insightful surveys of what people are doing with data these days.

My favorite chapters are: "Seeing Your Life in Data", "Information Platforms and the Rise of Data Scientists", "Portable Data in Real Time", "Visualizing Urban Data", "Natural Language Corpus Data", and "Superficial Data Analysis"
Aug 11, 2011 Albert rated it really liked it
A thought-provoking tour of recent data-intensive research. I found it most useful for its "aha" and "I should have thought of that" moments. I also appreciated the numerous external references to free datasets and data processing tools.
Jan 22, 2010 Trevor rated it liked it
"Natural Language Corpus Data", "What Data Doesn't Do", and "Connecting Data" were my favorite articles. I also liked the idea of using Second Life for easy scientific 3D visualization in "Beautifying Data in the Real World".
Vuk Trifkovic
Feb 21, 2011 Vuk Trifkovic rated it liked it
Shelves: o-reilly
Always tough when you deal with edited volume, but good book overall. I expected bit more from some chapters, but good idea of what is going on overall.
Aug 26, 2009 Don rated it liked it
great collection of academic papers and conference talk notes. the facebook/hadoop paper was especially interesting.
Mar 01, 2012 Fixxxer rated it really liked it
Loved the chapters by Nathan Yau, Peter Norvig, on Radiohead's House of Cards and on the NASA Mars Explorers!
Nov 26, 2012 Valerie rated it liked it

Many of chapters were way above my head. Was interesting nonetheless
Phil Chen
Aug 13, 2010 Phil Chen rated it liked it
Cool examples of data and data handling.
Apr 23, 2010 Kyle marked it as to-read
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