Visual Correlation Analysis of Numerical and Categorical Data on the Correlation Map

TitleVisual Correlation Analysis of Numerical and Categorical Data on the Correlation Map
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsZhang, Zhiyuan, McDonnell Kevin T., Zadok Erez, and Mueller Klaus
JournalIEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (TVCG '14)
Date Published12/2014

Correlation analysis can reveal the complex relationships that often exist among the variables in multivariate data.  However, as the number of variables grows, it can be difficult to gain a good understanding of the correlation landscape and  important intricate relationships might be missed. We previously introduced a technique that arranged the variables into a 2D  layout, encoding their pairwise correlations. We then used this layout as a network for the interactive ordering of axes in parallel  coordinate displays. Our current work expresses the layout as a correlation map and employs it for visual correlation analysis. In  contrast to matrix displays where correlations are indicated at intersections of rows and columns, our map conveys correlations  by spatial proximity which is more direct and more focused on the variables in play. We make the following new contributions,  some unique to our map: (1) we devise mechanisms that handle both categorical and numerical variables within a unified  framework, (2) we achieve scalability for large numbers of variables via a multi-scale semantic zooming approach, (3) we  provide interactive techniques for exploring the impact of value bracketing on correlations, and (4) we visualize data relations  within the sub-spaces spanned by correlated variables by projecting the data into a corresponding tessellation of the map.