Stephen Few is the author of (among others) “Show Me The Numbers“. Besides writing about what should be done, in the field of data visualization, Dr. Few also writes a lot about what should not be done. He does that in a sharp, merciless way which makes it very interesting reading (although, sometimes Dr. Few can be too harsh). This time, it was the turn of the Tableau blog team to be at the center of Stephen Few’s attention, and not for the good reason.
If Tableau wishes to call this research, then I must qualify it as bad research. It produced no reliable or useful findings. Rather than a research study, it would be more appropriate to call this “someone having fun with an eye tracker.”
Reading merciless critique by knowledgeable experts is an excellent way to develop that “inner voice” that questions all your decisions and makes sure you don’t make too many mistakes. Despite the fear to be fried, I really that some day I’ll be able to know what Stephen Few things of my work.
Disclaimer: Stephen Few was very generous to allow me using the illustrations from his book in my teaching.
Featured image is Public domain image by Alan Levine from here