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The Functional Art: An introduction to information graphics and visualization by Alberto Cairo

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1. Why Visualize: From Information to Wisdom

My expertise has always been my ignorance, my admission and acceptance of not knowing.... When you can admit that you don’t know, you are more likely to ask the questions that will enable you to learn.

Richard Saul Wurman, from Information Anxiety 2

Recently someone asked me what personality trait best characterizes those interested in a career in visualization and infographics. My answer: “An insatiable, childish curiosity.”

Curiosity, combined with a tendency to try to explain everything using reason, led me to a career in journalism and, later, to specialize in information graphics. It is not possible to be a good communicator if you have not developed a keen interest in almost everything as ...

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