Data Visualization Tools

Introduction | مقدّمة

This page is a collection of resources I have found useful for visualization of data. I have focused primarily on Gephi, but there are literally hundreds of free online tools for data visualization these days. Below are some of those that I have found most helpful. Unless otherwise noted, all tools work with Unicode fonts and right-to-left scripts (i.e., for those of you working with Arabic–no worries).
هذه الصفحة تمثّل مجموعة من المصادر الإلكترونية التي وجدتها مفيدة لرسم البيانات. في بحثي، أركّز على “جيفي” لكنّ هناك ميئات من الأدوات الرقمنية لرسم البيانات هذه الأيام. القائمة التالية متكوّنة من البعض منها التي أستفدت منها في بحثها. كل الأدوات التالية تقبل الكتابة في “” واللغات التي تُكتب من اليمين إلى اليسار… أي، على سبيل المثال، العربية.


Gephi is a power network visualization software. It has three basic components to the GUI, the “graph,” the “data,” and “preview.” The data need to be in specific formats prior to loading them in and the learning curve can be a bit steep–but the effort is well worth it for some striking visualizations. It also comes preloaded with a lot of statistical analysis tools (including explanations & paperwork for the algorithms it uses). The user-community is strong and online tutorials are available in several languages.


Cytoscape is another powerful visualization tool and in some ways more flexible than Gephi. You can alter the data after loading them into Gephi and you can choose your “Source,” “Target,” and “Relationship” columns from the file rather than having to set them up with those labels ahead of time. The visualizations are not always as pleasing as Gephi, but there are a lot of options for those.


This is the main (but certainly not the only) ‘wordle’ web-base software for making ‘word maps’ of a text. Simple input the text and it will draw a map of the text, arranging words from large to small depending on the number of occurances.


Palladio is a powerful and user-friendly tool for identifying connections between data in tables (usually a .csv). It is the web-based version of the architecture behind the “Republic of Letters” project based at Stanford University.


Voyant is another interesting data visualization tool that requires that you have an electronic version of the text with which you are working. It can do some cool stuff.


TimeGlider and TimeMapper allow you to make timelines of historical events, integrating geo-spatial data along with pictures, notes, and other details.


Al-Raqmiyyat is a blog run by Dr. Maxim Romanov, currently a post-doc fellow at Tufts University. His ‘toolbox’ contains a variety of links and information on data visualization for those more accustomed to working with script-languages like R., Python, etc.