Data visualization tools for users

Data visualization tools for users
Data visualization tools for users


There are a wide range of tools currently available for data visualization, both free and at a cost. Some are intended for users who only want to generate visualizations, rather than to program an application. Others are more focused on programmers who want to integrate visualizations in their developments.

As regards the first group, there is the well-known Microsoft Office tool suite (especially, Microsoft Excel). There is also its equivalent for the Apple computer family, iWork. Both suites allow users to generate different types of charts.

On the other hand, the popular photograph editing software Adobe Photoshop can be used to generate visualizations, although its learning curve is somewhat high. A free, open-code alternative is Gimp

In the world of vectorial design, there are also tools widely used by designers that can be used to generate visualizations, such as Adobe Illustrator, OmniGraffle or the free Inkscape.

There are less known alternatives to these popular programs, such as Tableau Public, which is available for Windows and Mac platforms, and Gapminder Desktop, which is also available for these platforms, as well as for Linux systems. Both tools are free.



Lastly, there are several alternatives for those who prefer web-based tools. Among the most popular are Google Chart, which can be used to generate complex charts directly in HTML5/SVG, ready to include in any web page. Another interesting alternative is ManyEyes, developed by IBM. Another free, web-based application is And the list can be expanded to include paid tools, such as, Piktochart, Venngage or Dipity.

More information on this list of data visualization software can be found in Wikipedia

But we could not end this post without mentioning CartoDB, the web tool that allows users to add data sources and generate visualizations for them in a matter of minutes. We will be speaking more about this platform in future posts.


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