Journey of magic books
MAT 259, 2022
Zijian Wan

I'm interested in how often books about learning magic are checked out and how long they have been kept (read). So, I ran the following query to obtain relevant book checkout records.

(title LIKE '%magic%'
AND (title LIKE '%learn%'
OR title LIKE '%beginners%'
OR title LIKE '%tricks%'))
AND YEAR(cout) BETWEEN 2006 AND 2021;

Preliminary sketches
The records were obtained as a CSV file and preprocessed with Python (codes attached below, "dataPreprocessing.pdf").
Each checkout/checkin record is visualized as a trajectory from the date the book was checked out to the date it was checked in. The coordinates of the points that consist of a trajectory are computed as follows. The z coordinate represents the distance from the plane of that circle. Since the distance between two adjacent year circles is fixed (which corresponds to 365 days), the z coordinate can be calculated according to the days that the book has been kept by the reader. The x and y coordinates are computed based on a polar coordinate system as shown in the figure below. Note that both the angle phi and the length l are determined by the month and day. In this way, the visualization form (which is like flowers) is actually determined by the data instead of manually designed.

Then, I visualized the records in Processing. For each year, there is a circle.

Final result
I changed the radius of each circle to represent the total number of checkouts of that year and the colors were updated for asethetic reasons.

All work is developed within Processing