In mathematics you don’t understand things. You just get used to them (John von Neumann, 1903–1957; in Gary Zukav (1979), The Dancing Wu Li Masters).
Suppose that we have n objects and that for each pair of objects a numeric quantity or a ranking describes the relationship between objects. The objects could be geographic locations, with a distance describing the relationship between locations. Other examples are different types of food or drink, with judges comparing items pairwise and providing a score for each pair. Multidimensional Scaling combines such pairwise information into a whole picture of the data and leads to a visual representation of the relationships.
Visual and geometric aspects have ...