Visual Analytics (VA) is a new field that focuses on taking large data sets in a form that is opaque to humans, and interactively visualizing them to reveal the information contained within to a human analyst.

This multidisciplinary field intended to help people understand how to synthesize information in order to derive insights from massive, dynamic, ambiguous, and often conflicting data. Skilled analysts rapidly explore large, complex data sets using interactive visualizations. This draws upon research in a number of relevant areas, including information visualization, human computer interaction, machine learning, statistics, and cognitive science.

Scope of Visual Analytics

Although visual analytics originally was intended to solve data analysis problems in the security and intelligence domains, the tools and techniques that have been developed in the past 6-8 years are also of great interest to analysts in many other data-rich domains, e.g., aerospace safety, manufacturing and maintenance, transportation, financial risk analysis and fraud detection, business intelligence and process analysis, health care and medical research, and environmental health and safety.

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