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3D Programming for Windows® by Charles Petzold

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3D Visualization of Data

As we accumulate more and more data in our computers, we need better ways to visually represent that data. Animation and 3D graphics can help. Animation can be automatically initiated, triggered with a button, or controlled wholly by the user through a scrollbar or slider.

As a simple example, suppose you want to represent the population of the individual states of the United States, but you want to include census data dating from the very first census in 1790 up to the most recent census in 2000. One possible approach is to use little bars to show the population for each state on a map of the United States, and then let the user set the year using a scrollbar. In this way, it's easy to visualize the change in population ...

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