Exploration of the Effects of Visualization Tools and Programming Languages

Document Type


Lead Author Type

CIS Masters Student


Dr. D. Robert Adams; adamsr@gvsu.edu

Embargo Period



This project is an observational study to understand the differences between a visualization tool and visualization using a programming language, and to interpret the ease of use and flexibility between them. The motivation of this project has come from the question why there are so many visualization tools and programming language visualization libraries available. To answer the question a data set of computer GPUs was selected and cleaned. Then it was stored using Microsoft Azure cloud storage. The Python language and Tableau tool were used for visualizations. Additionally, in Python visualizations were done using the matplotlib, seaborn, and plotly libraries. Differences between the programming language and tool were observed from the beginning. The analysis between the two tells us that a programming language is more powerful than a tool, although the tool is easier and less complex to learn. However, tools may not be cost effective, and visualization features may be limited. On the other hand, a programming language is free of cost and very flexible, but producing visualizations take more time. In conclusion visualization tools and programming-based visualizations both have their place. They both have their pros and cons, and depending the requirement of the user either of them may be suitable.

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