# [Blindmath] psychology statistical diagrams

Bernard M Diaz b.m.diaz at liverpool.ac.uk
Tue Oct 26 10:45:13 CDT 2010

```Hi Sean,

And all noted.  We abandoned my attempt at a surface for exactly
the reason you say - it took longer to explain the poor model,
than to understand the notion of a surface embedded in 3-space.

How much is this a subject thing? Spotting trends is one thing,
but seeing a pattern, say sequences of sine curves, or a normal
distribution surface? (Poor examples, for which, apologies ...)

In computer science, the notion of diagrams seems to be most
frequently tied to the "design" idea.   Thus spatial layout
equates design.  The true 3D nature of a branching tree, say,
is lost in the layering that is deemed more important when
understanding "breadth first traversal" of the tree structure,
etc.

Regards - Bernard Diaz

Sean Tikkun wrote:
> As a High School Math teacher and TVI I avoid 3D representations in
> braille.  In geometry we produced dozens of planar figures and
> geometric shapes with braille paper and some careful construction.
> It takes time and a little skill, but you cut through a lot of
> conceptual learning that is purely to understand a poor model.  When
> I get a math book my assistant gets to go through the whole thing to
> put a sticky note next to every 3D image, then we problem solve each
> individually.  She has no idea how much math she has learned in the
> last year of doing this!
>
> We must remember certain things are done in math because they are
> easier.  Most mathematical symbols are shorthand, and yet in braille
> end up with 6 or more cells.  Diagrams are used for ease of
> understanding and representation both to produce and interpret.  If
> we lose sight of that, we are losing the purpose of the object.
>
> One last example... for trend and slope data, I just used tables.  At
> times interpretation of raw numbers is far easier than training to
> 'see' the graph, and their are very good sighted mathematicians that
> 'see' trends in this way.
>
>
> Sean Tikkun Teacher of the Visually Impaired LaFollette High School