January 22, 2010 in Software (E)
[prMac.com] London, UK - friedEgg Limited today announced the release of version 1.5 of friedEgg Touch, an interactive data analysis tool for Mac OS X. Improvements in this latest release focused on three key areas of usability:
(1) Formatting and filtering the charts - The tool palettes have been re-engineered to simplify the handling of formatting tools and filters. Either double click a tool in the palette or drag to the chart. Alternately, use the keyboard to add or remove a tool or filter.
(2) Improved visual cues - The user can define the contrast between selected or unselected chart objects (bars in a chart or pie segments), making it easier to see the items selected. In addition, formatting tools and filters are highlighted, both on the charts and the palettes, when selected. The cursor changes to reflect the actions applied to the chart.
(3) Data selection - Improvements in the way that the filters are combined to select ranges of the users data. Using both the upper and lower filters within a dimension allows specific ranges to be selected or excluded. These can then be further adjusted by clicking individual chart items.
Further improvements addressed the reliability of saving and opening analysis files. This included minor changes to the formatting of the saved analysis files. Older files are automatically reformatted when first used.
friedEgg Touch differs from other basic charting tools in that it allows the user to interact with their data by directly manipulating a chart. This enables complex analysis, across many dimensions, in a few simple steps. Using the provided Automator actions, friedEgg Touch is easily integrated into an analysis workflow.
Consider an analysis process with a traditional spreadsheet - A table of data is prepared and filtered with expressions or by selecting items from a list. This is either presented as another table of numbers or as a simple chart. If the user wants to change the chart, this requires changes to either the expressions or items selected in the lists, followed by the re-generation of the chart.
friedEgg Touch revolutionises this process. Charts are created and changed by simply dragging symbols representing the data columns to the chart dimensions. The user changes the filters directly in the charts, by either clicking on objects or by dragging a filter panel across either of the three chart dimensions. The selected data is then available for another step of the analysis, maybe applying different data columns to the chart dimensions. By visually indicating when an item is selected, the user has more control over what is being filtered.
Large multi-column data tables can be viewed and analysed. By using additional analysis steps, maybe assigning different data columns to a chart dimension, the user can drill down on the information they need. This simple approach allows non-technical users to mine their data on their own desktop, without the the overhead of more complex and expensive tools.
Common analysis steps can be saved as templates, to apply against similar structured data tables. Both the selected data and the chart image can then be exported to other applications.
The major activities in creating and saving an analysis, together with the exporting of data and chart images, are supported by a number of Automator actions that are provided with friedEgg Touch. These, together with the AppleScript support, make it even easier to integrate friedEgg Touch in an analysis workflow. A sample data table is included with the application to enable users to evaluate the key features.
friedEgg Limited is a UK based Mac developer, dedicated to providing the most easy to use data analysis tools for non-technical small business and educational users. Copyright 2010 friedEgg Limited All Rights Reserved. Apple, and the Apple logo are registered trademarks of Apple Computer in the U.S. and/or other countries.