1700-1799: New graphic forms
The 18th century witnessed, and participated in, the initial germination of the seeds of visualization which had been planted earlier. Map-makers began to try to show more than just geographical position on a map. As a results, new graphic forms (isolines and contours) were invented, and thematic mapping of physical quantities took root. Towards the end of this century, we see the first attempts at the thematic mapping of geologic, economic, and medical data.
Abstract graphs, and graphs of functions were introduced, along with the early beginnings of statistical theory (measurement error) and systematic collection of empirical data. As other (economic and political) data began to be collected, some novel visual forms were invented to portray them, so the data could "speak to the eyes".
As well, several technological innovations provided necessary nutrients. These facilitated the reproduction of data images (color printing, lithography), and other developments eased the task of creating them. Yet, most of these new graphic forms appeared in publications with limited circulation, unlikely to attract wide attention.
The normal distribution was first introduced by de Moivre in an article in 1733 (reprinted in the second edition of his The Doctrine of Chances, 1738). Laplacelater extended this in his book Analytical Theory of Probabilities.A further generalization, to the central limit theorem occurred later.
References:deMoivre:1733 deMoivre:1738 Laplace:1812
1671 is probably too early; 1736--1755 would probably be more appropriate. There are earlier references to Hipparchus (190-120BC) regarding the use of polar coordinates in establishing stellar positions, and Abu Arrayhan Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Biruni (1021) regarding the use of three rectangular coordinates to establish a point in space.
Lambert wanted to extend the coverage of the system to include the concept of depth. He believed that the colour pyramid would be useful to textile merchants to decide if they stocked all the colours, and to dyers and printers as a source of inspiration.
References:Mayer:1758 Harris:1766 Lambert:1772
Lambert was one of the first to use graphs to analyze experimental data, and to use graphical calculation, e.g., computing the slopes of curves to estimate rates of change.
Monge's work, Descriptive geometry, was the first consciously formulated exposition of the science of orthographic projection and descriptive geometry. Sylvestre Lacriux discovered the principles of projection independently about the same time as Monge. Jean Pierre Hackette added new material to Monge's descriptive geometry and published a book on this subject in 1822.