More Dimensions


Let's assume that you have a really big Excel file containing 4 columns named X,Y,Z and V full of numbers. You know only that value V depends on values X,Y and Z in some mysterical way and your job is solve that mystery.

First you try if either X,Y or Z alone correlates with V. So, you create scratter plots X-V, Y-V and Z-V with Excel and get the following graphs:

4D-mystery-xv 4D-mystery-yv 4D-mystery-zv

Clearly, each of the variables X,Y and Z affect V but from those plots you cannot tell how exactly. Other excel visualization types won't help either, because the data is 'non-gridded' - just arbitary 4D-points in random order. So, you need another tool to see if 3D-plots would reveal the secret.

Which tool to choose? There are many choices, some free, some not. Most of them are really complex-looking and full of scientific or graphics-related features hard to understand. So, you download gnuplot, the free, simple and still powerful data visualization tool. To work with gnuplot, you convert the data into tabulator-separated text file. Using few special settings such as 'set dgrid3d ...' and 'set contour' you get the following 3D-plots X-Y-V, X-Z-V and Y-Z-V.

4D-mystery-xyv 4D-mystery-xzv 4D-mystery-yzv

Didn't help much, did it? It seems obvious that there is some interesting phenomenon in the data, but those visualizations are not quite enough to explain what is going on.

Too bad you didn't have HeatMiner® available then. It would have saved you a lot of time! Just feed it with the data you have - and voilą! - you see and understand. Aaah, it is an UMBRELLA...!

Umbrella-shaped phenomenon visualized by HeatMiner

(If your browser supports Java3D, you should soon see a 4D-heatmap - (x,y,z,color) - that can be rotated with a mouse. The snapshot images below are nothing compared to that live HeatMiner experience...)

heatminer-umbrella-1 heatminer-umbrella-2 heatminer-umbrella-3

Of course, real-world phenomena do not look like umbrella, but nevertheless they may have a shape nobody expected. Avoid guessing and use HeatMiner® to quickly create the initial hypothesis. Then apply your favorite statistical methods to verify the phenomenon you just saw in the visualization.

Try HeatMiner!

Some of these great HeatMiner® heatmap visualizations are now available as-a-Service at the Cloud'N'Sci.fi algorithm marketplace. Go to the HeatMiner homepage and create heatmaps from your own data using free evaluation campaigns! New heatmap types and demos are introduced frequently at the new HeatMiner wiki pages so keep an eye on it for updates.

Want to see more?

Check the latest HeatMiner solutions and demos!

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