The human eye is great at processing a lot of information in a hurry. For survival reasons, our brains’ visual systems have evolved to analyze visual information quickly and efficiently—no matter what we are viewing.
Say you are browsing through photos on your phone and you land on a photo of a basket full of berries. In no time at all, you can glean a lot of information about those berries.
“You want to look at these berries and count them and know how big they are, and know that there’s more red ones than blue ones,” says Steve Franconeri, a professor of psychology at Northwestern and of marketing (by courtesy) at the Kellogg School. “Your visual system processes the entire two dimensional rectangle of space in front of your eyes in parallel. In one shot. And it lets you pull out an amazing amount of analysis from a single glance.”
In this episode of The Insightful Leader, we hear from professor Steve Franconeri on the incredible power of data visualizations. Franconeri also offers tips to make sure your own data visualizations are as compelling as possible.
Note: The Insightful Leader is produced for the ear and not meant to be read as a transcript. We encourage you to listen to the audio version above. However, a transcript of this episode is available here.