1900-1949: Modern Dark Ages
If the early 1800s were the "golden age" of statistical graphics and thematic cartography, the early 1900s could be called the "modern dark ages" of visualization (FriendlyDenis:2001:valois).
There were few graphical innovations, and, by the mid-1930s, the enthusiasm for visualization which characterized the late 1800s had been supplanted by the rise of quantification and formal, often statistical, models in the social sciences. Numbers, parameter estimates, and, especially, standard errors were precise. Pictures were- well, just pictures: pretty or evocative, perhaps, but incapable of stating a "fact" to three or more decimals. Or so it seemed to statisticians.
But it is equally fair to view this as a time of necessary dormancy, application, and popularization, rather than one of innovation. In this period statistical graphics became "main stream." Graphical methods entered textbooks (Peddle:1910, Gilman:1917, Haskell:1919, Palmer:1921, Karsten:1925), the curriculum (Costelloe:1915, Warne:1916), and standard use in government (Ayres:1919), commerce (Gantt:1919, Shewhart:1931) and science.
In this period graphical methods were used, perhaps for the first time, to provide new insights, discoveries, and theories in astronomy, physics, biology, and other sciences. As well, experimental comparisons of the efficacy of various graphics forms were begun, e.g., (Eells:1926), and a number of practical aids to graphing were developed. In the latter part of this period, new ideas and methods for multi-dimensional data in statistics and psychology would provide the impetus to look beyond the 2D plane.Graphic innovation was also awaiting new ideas and technology: the development of the machinery of modern statistical methodology, and
the advent of the computational power which would support the next wave of developments in data visualization.
"We must be careful in wanting, in a graphic translation, to say too much at once. The main merit, one might say, the real purpose of the statistical chart, is the clarity." - Bertillon on Chart Uniformity
According to Brintonthe graph that most impressed people was one showing the decline in death rate due to improvements in sanitation and nursing.
De Martonne was a geographical expert and secretary of the Comité d'études, established by the French in 1915 to prepare guidelines for peace and the demarcation of boundaries. In this work, he had to develop ways to represent mixed distributions of different ethnic groups
In 1924, Berger made the first EEG recording in man and called it Electroenkephalogram. Berger was the first to describe the different brainwaves in the normal and abnormal brain. He also researched the nature of changes in EEG for brain diseases such as epilepsy.
von Foerster observed that the closer to the present, the more densely filled the paper was with historical events; conversely, the further you went back the thinner the table. Plotting the data using a logarithmic time scale allowed the history of time to be plotted on one table.
Beck, an engineering draughtsman, designed the map like an electrical circuit board, using only vertical, horizontal and 45 degree angled lines. He located stations according to available space. The resulting map was geographically inaccurate, but easier to use to determine how to get from point A to B. Beck's idea was soon copied by most subway (and bus) companies around the world.
The first official record of the use of the word "bug'' in the context of computing is associated with a relay-basedHarvard Mark II computer, which was in service at the Naval Weapons Center in Dahlgren, Virginia. On September 9th, 1945, a mothflew into one of the relays and jammed it. The offending moth was taped into the log book alongside the official report, whichstated: "First actual case of a bug being found.''