Title: Adobe Illustrator
Body: Professional standard software for creating original vector-based graphics. Includes powerful drawing tools and brushes.
The ai file format is a common vector format for exchange and its feature set allows creation of complex vector artwork. Illustrator imports over two dozen formats (including PDF and SVG). Of particular use to data visualization is importation of SVG, or scalar vector graphics, which is an W3C recommendation, and is often exported from other programs.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information: There are many extensions and plug-ins available for customizing this software, including those at the following link: http://www.adobe.com/products/illustrator/extend.html
Title: Adobe Photoshop
Body: Photoshop is a comprehensive photo editing tool produced by Adobe Systems. Users can manipulate photos, graphics, and other raster images using a variety of tools and predefined filters. Photoshop also allows users to record specific photo editing steps, which allows for automated batch processing. Photoshop is available as a stand-alone product, but is also part of Adobe's "Creative Suite" family of products. Photoshop Extended is an enhancement to Photoshop, and provides for enhanced 3D creation and editing.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information:
Title: Asymptote
Body: Asymptote is a vector graphics language that can be used for technical drawing.
Being a language, it gives ultimate control to the user. Typesetting of labels and equations is done by LaTeX, which produces high-quality PostScript output. It provides a portable standard for typesetting mathematical figures and generates output in PostScript, PDF, SVG, or 3D PRC vector graphics.
Technical Expertise Required: Basic programming skills
Cost: Free
Additional Information: Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asymptote_%28vector_graphics_language%29
Title: GIMP (Graphical Image Manipulation Program)
Body: GIMP is an open source and free alternative to Photoshop. It is intended for use with Raster graphics, and can be used for creating new images, retouching photographic images and converting files to different file types. Gimp supports most image file types as well as other graphical image manipulation program file types. It is also possible to create custom scripts to automate a variety of tasks.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Free
Additional Information:
Title: Google Charts
Body: Google Charts is a combination of two application programming interfaces (APIs), Google Chart API and Google Visualization API. Google Chart API creates static visualizations of data and embeds them into webpages. Some HTML programming experience is recommended. Available visualization types include standard scatter, line, bar, pie, and box charts as well as Venn diagrams, dynamic icons or callouts, formulas, and connectivity graphs. In addition, maps can be made and embedded into webpages.
The Google Visualization API creates dynamic visualizations that allow for user interaction within a webpage. These visualizations are created with Java scripting, and Google provides links to Java script tutorials as well as source or example code in a Java library. In addition to the visualization types available with Google Charts API, Google Visualization API include timelines, heat maps, tree maps, word or term clouds, filters for other visualizations, and interactive Google Maps.
Data sources that can be used for both APIs include any file that can be imported as a two-dimensional table, including text files, spreadsheets, and database tables. The data must be retrieved using a retrieval protocol and the structured accordingly. Google provides Java, Python, and Google Web Toolkit (GWT) libraries for data retrieval, as well as an API to retrieve data from Google Spreadsheets.
Technical Expertise Required: Basic programming skills
Cost: Free
Additional Information: For comparison of the two APIs: http://code.google.com/apis/charttools/docs/choosing.html
Title: JMP
Body: JMP is a desktop software package designed by SAS for dynamic data visualization and statistical data exploration. JMP includes an interactive graph builder that supports a wide variety of two- and three-dimensional graph types, and statisical reports are displayed along with plots for assessment and interpretation. Data can be loaded into JMP from common desktop file formats (e.g. text and spreadsheet files), as well as from a database or SAS server, and reports and visualizations can be exported in HTML, PDF and Adobe Flash formats for displaying and sharing results. JMP also integrates with the full SAS statistical software package to support more comprehensive analyses.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information: Schlotzhauer, S. 2007. Elementary Statistics using JMP. SAS Press. 480pp. (ISBN: 978-1-59994-375-6)
Title: Keynote
Body: Keynote is an Apple's presentation software. Presentation software is primarily used for composing "slides" for presentations. Emphasis is on graphics and animation. Keynote files can be saved as PowerPoint.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information:
Title: MATLAB
Body: MATLAB is an interactive data analysis and visualization environment that can be used to perform computationally-intense operations on large data sets efficiently. MATLAB also provides a high level programming language that supports rapid development of work-flow scripts and Graphical User Interface applications to automate repetitive tasks. A wide variety of discipline-specific software libraries, called toolboxes, are available from the publisher or user communities to extend the capabilities of the base program (e.g. statistics, curve fitting, image analysis and mapping). MATLAB programs can also leverage existing code written in Fortran, Java or other languages and source code is provided for most functions, allowing end-users to extend or customize routines for specialized analyses.
Technical Expertise Required: Basic programming skills
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information: MATLAB documentation (http://www.mathworks.com/access/helpdesk/help/techdoc/)
Mathtools.net, a link exchange for technical computing (http://www.mathtools.net/MATLAB/)
Hanselman, D. and Littlefield, B. 2004. Mastering MATLAB 7. Prentice Hall. 864pp. (ISBN: 978-0131430181)
Scholarpedia article on MATLAB (http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/MATLAB)
Title: NodeXL
Body: NodeXL is a free, open-source template for Excel 2007 and 2010 that lets you enter a network edge list, click a button, and see the network graph, all in the Excel window.
You can customize the graph’s appearance; zoom, scale and pan the graph; dynamically filter vertices and edges; alter the graph’s layout; find clusters of related vertices; and calculate graph metrics. Networks can be imported from and exported to a variety of file formats, and built-in connections for getting networks from Twitter, Flickr, YouTube.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Free
Additional Information:
Title: Octave
Body: GNU Octave is a high-level language, primarily intended for numerical computations. It provides a command line interface for solving linear and nonlinear problems numerically, and for performing other numerical experiments using a language that is mostly compatible with MATLAB. It may also be used as a batch-oriented language.
Octave has extensive tools for solving common numerical linear algebra problems, finding the roots of nonlinear equations, integrating ordinary functions, manipulating polynomials, and integrating ordinary differential and differential-algebraic equations. It is easily extensible and customizable via user-defined functions written in Octave's own language, or using dynamically loaded modules written in C++, C, Fortran, or other languages.
Technical Expertise Required: Advanced
Cost: Free
Additional Information: Octave Documentation and User Manual (https://www.gnu.org/software/octave/doc/interpreter/)
Quarteroni, A., Saleri, F., Scientific Computing with MATLAB and Octave, Second Ed., Springer, 2006, 318 p.
Title: OriginPro
Body: OriginPro is an expanded version of Origin, both of which are software for data management, statistics, and graphics. OriginPro is point-and-click interactive software and uses multiple windows to manage data and run analyses. A variety of graphics can be created using a graph editor and exported for incorporation with the Microsoft Office suite. Data management is done through worksheets bundled into project management files. There are a limited number of statistical analyses available including basic descriptive statistics, linear regression and analysis of variance, survival analysis and non-parametric tests. Signal processing tools such as Fast Fourier Transform (FFT), and peak analysis tools are also available in OriginPro. Analyses can be scripted using the custom programming languages (LabTalk and Origin C).
OriginPro is sold at a discount to students for personal use.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information:
Title: Panoply Data Viewer
Body: Panoply is a cross-platform application which plots geo-gridded arrays from netCDF, HDF and GRIB datasets. It supports the following operations:
Slice and plot specific latitude-longitude, latitude-vertical, longitude-vertical, or time-latitude arrays from larger multidimensional variables.
Combine two arrays in one plot by differencing, summing or averaging.
Plot lon-lat data on a global or regional map (using any of over 75 map projections) or make a zonal average lineplot.
Overlay continent outlines or masks on lon-lat plots.
Use any ACT, CPT, GGR, or PAL color table for scale colorbar.
Save plots to disk GIF, JPEG, PNG or TIFF bitmap images or as PDF or PostScript graphics files.
Export lon-lat map plots in KMZ format.
Export animations as AVI or MOV video or as a collection of invididual frame images.
Explore remote THREDDS and OpenDAP catalogs and open datasets served there.
To be plotted by Panoply, dataset variables must be tagged with metadata information using a convention such as CF.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Free
Additional Information:
Title: Photofiltre
Body: Photofiltre is a simple, free image editing application that offers the standard adjustment functions (Brightness, contrast, dyed, saturation, gamma correction), layers, and also artistic filters (watercolor, pastels, Indian ink, pointillism, puzzle effect). Photofiltre can also use Photoshop plug-ins.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Free
Additional Information: http://photofiltre.free.fr/frames_en.htm
Title: PSPP
Body: PSPP is a program for statistical analysis of sampled data, and is a free replacement for the proprietary program SPSS. PSPP can perform descriptive statistics, T-tests, linear regression and non-parametric tests. Its back-end is designed to perform its analyses as fast as possible, regardless of the size of the input data. You can use PSPP with its graphical interface or the more traditional syntax commands. Some benefits are that PSPP uses SPSS files and is compatible with OpenOffice and can support 1 billion data observations.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Free
Additional Information: http://www.gnu.org/software/pspp/pspp.html
http://www.gnu.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PSPP
Title: SAS
Body: SAS is an integrated system of software that enables everything from data access across multiple sources to complex manipulations of data files to performance of sophisticated statistical analyses and data visualizations. Three of SAS' most popular software products that are commonly used by ecologists are Base SAS, SAS/STAT, and SAS/GRAPH. SAS is available for Windows and UNIX platforms. GUIs make SAS accessible to novice users and the command-line interface facilitates development of programs for complex data processing.
Technical Expertise Required: Basic programming skills
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information: Khattree, Ravindra and Dayanand N. Naik. 2000. Multivariate Data Reduction and Discrimination with SAS Software. Cary, NC: SAS Institute Inc. 978-1-58025-357-4
Littell, Ramon C., George A. Mi lliken, Walter W. Stroup, Russell D. Wolfinger, and Oliver Schabenberger. 2006.SAS for Mixed Models, Second Edition. Cary, NC: SAS Institute Inc. ISBN: 978-1-59047-500-3
SAS Essentials: A Guide to Mastering SAS for Research. 2010. Elliott, Alan C. and Wayne A. Woodward. San Francisco: John Wiley and Sons, Inc. ISBN: 978-0470461297
Delwiche, Lora D. and Susan J. Slaughter. 2008. The Little SAS Book: A Primer (Fourth Edition). Cary, NC: Sas Institute Inc. ISBN: 978-1-59994-725-9
Burlew, Michele. 2009. Combining and Modifying SAS Data Sets: Examples, Second Edition. Cary, NC: SAS Institute Inc. ISBN: 978-1-59047-920-9
Title: SigmaPlot
Body: SigmaPlot is a commercial software package primarily used for data analysis and publication-quality visualization. Data can be input directly into a table or imported from basic ascii or Microsoft Excel files. Data summarization (e.g., mean, sum) and analysis tools (e.g., parametric and non-parametric statistics, regression, and correlation) operate on the data at a click of the mouse. Graphs or charts in 2-D or 3-D (e.g., line, bar, and pie charts, histograms, heat maps, surfaces) are created via a wizard. Batches of files can be analyzed and graphed automatically. SigmaPlot can also create default or user-defined reports. Specialized functionality of SigmaPlot includes instrument calibration, medical test analysis, and molecular biology tools.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information:
Title: Stata
Body: Stata 11 is software for data management, statistics, and graphics. Stata uses point-and-click interaction and help to guide users through tasks. Logs can be created and stored as repeatable scripts, so that data management and analysis are completely documented. Users can perform statistical analyses ranging from basic statistical summaries and linear regression models to multilevel mixed-effects modeling, generalized linear modeling, resampling and simulation, and many multivariate analyses. A graph editor allows users to produce figures based on the data and statistical models. Stata also includes a custom programming language (Mata) for programming customizations. At this time, Stata 11 is the latest version.
Stata comes in four different application "packages" which vary based on size of dataset and processing need. A "Small Stata" is available only to educational purchasers including students, with a limited number of variables and observations permitted in the dataset.
Many local as well as national users groups for Stata exist and hold regular meetings in addition to creating online support communities.
Technical Expertise Required: No programming
Cost: Cost-basis
Additional Information: