Data visualizations are effective ways for inputting information into a human’s brain, and as Visual Analytics Researcher at Tableau Software and Visual.ly advisor Robert Kosara says, visualizations are what makes our world real.
But even when the people who created the visualization are being honest, we can’t always trust what our eyes are showing us. We’ve evolved our visual perceptual system over millions of years (some other animals see optical illusions too) and it is extremely effective at what it does, but it still has some quirks.
In a data visualization context, illusions are dangerous because they can make us see things that aren’t really there in the data. Good practice helps us to avoid these optical illusions, but occasionally they can still sneak in through design choices,... keep reading