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Circos Data Visualization How-to: A Review

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From a discussion topic on LinkedIn, I received from Packt Publishing a copy of Circos Data Visualization How-to, by Tom Schenk Jr. In the past couple of weeks I toyed with reading it, until I finally came up to read it all. This is a quite short book, topping at 54 pages of actual content. And as a short book it doesn’t give you a full perspective of Circos capabilities, but it’s a start.

The author is not related to the biological field, so he takes some time explaining part of the biological terminology used in Circos, somtehing that could have been skipped to people in the area. But this does not detract from the usefulness of this book. The chapters cover most part of Circos features, mostly using examples away from biology, which is somewhat useful, as it explains how to create your own diagrams and “chromosomes”. At the same time, maybe if the author had included a couple more chapters about some fine details of Circos, that would have been helpful in the long run.

The book is pleasantly written, there’s no fluff and the test is direct. But in the end you keep asking for more details and information, due to the abreviated size of it. As I said, it’s a good start, covering with somewhat more detail what you find in Circos website, but I definitely wanted a bit more.