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Visualization of multi-dimensional data

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I really enjoy a clever presentation of multi-dimensional data in a concise format. Miguel had a data set that was of five and a half dimensions, but it was not just a volume of data and there was no single plot type that could show what he needed to show:

For every X, Y, Z location (Three dimensions):

- The current direction in the horizontal plane (One dimension)
- The current magnitude (One dimension)

For every X, Y location
- The sea surface height (I would say this is half a dimension)

An advantage of doing this visualization in MATLAB was the ability to do some complicated visualizations in just a few lines of code.


contour3(lo,la,sshexa,14)
hold
surf(lo,la,sshexa)
alpha(.8)
shading interp
%[... snip ...]
quiver3(x,y,z,u,v,w,3,'k')
xlabel('Longitude')
ylabel('Latitude')
zlabel('Depth(m)')
title('Cavortex II Velocity Vectors')
axis tight

The rest of his code was essentially bringing in his data for various files and getting it into convenient forms for the above functions. The ability to take already powerful visualization and overlay them gives both power and flexibility.

Using MATLAB's data labeling, rotation and zooming capabilities, you can really explore this data set. With a little additional work, you could allow interactive choices of which X, Y points will show the current data.

 

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