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Getting Started with Virtualitics Explore

There are many analytical and visualization capabilities available in Virtualitics Explore. This guide provides an overview of those capabilities with links to additional guides for more details.

Setting up our Python API

  • pyVIP - an API to send commands to Explore from a Python environment (notebook, script, etc.).

Loading Your Data

You can load data into Virtualitics Explore from Local Data Sources and Remote Data Sources.

Local Data Sources:

  • CSV – A Comma Separated Values file.

  • Excel Spreadsheet – Virtualitics will allow users to select the worksheet from the ‘Worksheets’ dropdown with multiple sheets.

  • Text File – Note: Must specify the delimiter used to separate values in the Dataset Preview window.

  • JSON File – A specific file type for loading in network data (see Network Data Formats).

  • VIP Project – A saved Explore project with a “.vip” extension.

  • OBJ file (Desktop only) – A standard 3D image format which includes 3D coordinates, texture maps, polygonal faces, and other object information.

Remote Data Sources:

  • Snowflake

  • Databricks

  • MySQL

  • SQLServer

  • PostgreSQL

  • Redshift

  • Hadoop (via Hive or Impala servers)

  • URL - any of the supported local file types.

  • ODBC - other ODBC-compliant data sources can be connected as long as the required driver is installed.

Navigating Mapping View

Mapping View is our graphing canvas that allows you to explore multiple dimensions of your data on a variety of visualizations using out-of-the-box AI routines that accelerate speed to insight.

There are three (3) primary panels in Mapping View that allow you to work with your data and visualizations:

  • Features Panel - allows you to view, search, sort, and filter columns.

  • Legend Panel - shows you what each color, shape, or group represents on your visualization.

  • Mapping Panel - allows you to set specific dimensions that will change the position and appearance of plotted points on a graph.

The Explore Toolbar gives you quick access to a variety of tools to help you navigate the breadth and depth of your data.

  • History and Favorites - shows you a running audit

    of your project files and allows you to bookmark specific entries.

  • Image and Video Capture - enables you to capture images, GIFs, and videos to share outside of the platform.

  • Intelligent Exploration Tools - allow AI to guide you through your data.

  • Normalization - creates clarity in your data

    to aid interpretation and understanding.

  • Panel Icons - allow you to change the visibility of panels in mapping view.

  • Plot Types - allows you to select a specific visualization to explore and analyze your data.

  • Scatter Matrix - allows you to view different perspectives of a 3D plot.

  • Settings - allows you to customize your experience by adjusting preferences.You can learn more about these data sources by clicking on the "Navigating Mapping View" guide below.

  • Shared Virtual Office (SVO) - a collaborative space where you can connect and share visualizations and insights.

  • Spreadsheet View - allows you to view the entire data set and see distributions for each column.

  • Statistics - provides the following useful statistics for the selected numerical feature.

  • Virtual Reality (VR) - allows you to experience your data in an immersive 3D environment. (Windows desktop only)

  • Workflow - A Workflow allows you to save and automate analytic and visualization steps to apply them to a new set of data.

Working with the Mapping Panel

The Mapping Panel allows you to set specific dimensions that will change the position and appearance of plotted points on a graph.

Virtualitics Explore supports the following dimensions:

  • Arrow: allows you to draw attention to the value of an assigned feature by drawing an arrow pointing out of the point.

  • Color: allows you to change the color of your points, bins, lines, and surfaces to represent the value of that object for an assigned feature.

  • Group By: allows you to select and deselect categories.

  • Halo: allows you to highlight outliers or other categories of interest by circling points in that category with rings.

  • Playback: allows you to show points changing in time.

  • Position – allows you to set three spatial dimensions (X, Y, Z) that form the foundation for all plot types.

  • Pulsation: allows you to highlight outliers or other categories of interest by making points in that category grow larger and smaller repeatedly.

  • Shape: allows you to change the shape of each point to represent that point’s value or category for an assigned feature.

  • Size: allows you to change the size of specific points on a graph.

  • Transparency: allows you to emphasize or de-emphasize points based on numerical or categorical features.

In addition to the dimensions listed above, the following tools are available when working in the mapping panel:

  • Filters: allow you to modify how much of your data you are viewing by restricting to a specified range for numerical and date features or specific values for categorical features.

  • Hover Tooltip: allows you to label specific plot points and display values of all currently mapped features for that point.

Using Built-in AI Routines

Intelligent Exploration Tools allow AI to guide you through your data. The following built-in AI capabilities are available in Virtualitics Explore:

  • Anomaly Detection - examines your data and automatically identifies points that deviate significantly from the norm.

  • Clustering - groups points by numerical similarity.

  • Explainable AI (XAI) - provides succinct descriptions of relationships and insights.

  • Insights - automatically generated observations in plain English that are available for certain plot types.

  • Natural Language Query (NLQ) Assistant - enables you to input query text expressed in natural language and return relevant visualizations.

  • Network Extractor - enables users to generate Network Graphs from tabular datasets.

  • Principal Component Analysis (PCA) - reduces the complexity of a problem by condensing information from many different features into just a few representative features.

  • Smart Mapping - helps you instantly understand the key drivers in your data.

Visualizing Your Data

Plot Types allows you to select a specific visualization to explore and analyze your data. The following plot types are available in Virtualitics Explore:

  • 2D Map - a way of visualizing geospatial data, or data with locations, on a smaller, 2D scale.

  • 3D Globe - a way of examining geospatial data, or data with locations, on a larger 3D scale.

  • Convex Hull - adds shapes that outline all points of each color.

  • Ellipsoid - adds confidence intervals displayed as 2D or 3D ellipsoids.

  • Histogram - used to group rows in your data into different bins.

  • Line Plot - allows you to track how certain metrics change with respect to another feature, with your data points connected by straight lines.

  • Scatter Plot - a common plot type that visualizes each row in your dataset as a single point on either a 2D or 3D plotLine Plot.

  • Surface Plot - creates a continuous surface from your data in either 2D or 3D to view how one feature is affected by two others.

  • Violin Plot - spreads out overlapping points so that you can better see areas of high concentrations of points.

Doing More with Explore

Virtualitics Explore has additional tools available to help you up-level your data exploration. These include:

  • Annotations - leave notes, commentary, or detailed explanations to communicate insights and document your analytics process.

  • Calculator (Desktop only)- perform calculations on existing features in your dataset to create new features to support your analysis.

  • Contextual Menu - provides many useful options just a click away.

  • Find and Replace - find and replace specific values in your dataset.

  • Grid Options - adjust the view of your plot by toggling the plot gridlines and tick marks.

  • Info Panels - access detailed information associated with the selected points or bins.

  • Keyboard Shortcuts (Desktop only) - quickly move, rotate, or scroll through visualizations and data between different screens within the application.

  • Region Selection - zoom into a user-specified area on a 3D or 2D map.

  • Search - find specific words or phrases in the dataset's features.

  • View Options - a quick way to adjust the view of the plot.

Python API (pyVIP) - an API to send commands to Explore from a Python environment (notebook, script, etc.).