How Magazine has a recent article on tools that may be used by designers to create data visualizations. It’s a nice overview and I’ve used many of these. However, for the Mac, they skipped mentioning Numbers, Apple’s iWorks spreadsheet application.
I use Numbers rather than Excel because of the ease of copying into Illustrator. From Numbers I format and clean up my data (always an onerous task), do a lot data sketches, and copy the best ideas into illustrator to refine and design. The ability to cleanly copy and paste from Numbers into Illustrator makes the workflow much easier. And once I can get the chart into Creative Cloud, then I can use Edge to animate it and generate my CSS.
Of course, the real wish is that Adobe will bulk up Illustrator’s graphing capabilities or even just its UI. This tool hasn’t seen an upgrade for at least three versions and with all the data hype and Adobe’s focus on data mining, they could be leading the way with a great toolset.
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