Michael Friendly

Michael Friendly

Photo mosaic of Michael Friendly, composed of image tiles from the history of data visualization
Born (1945-05-07) May 7, 1945
New York City, New York
Residence Toronto, Ontario
Citizenship Canadian, American
Fields Psychology, data visualization, statistics
Institutions York University, Toronto
Alma mater Princeton
Doctoral advisor Harold Gulliksen
Known for mosaic plot

Michael Louis Friendly (born 1945) is an American psychologist, Professor of Psychology at York University in Ontario, Canada, and director of its Statistical Consulting Service, especially known for his contributions to graphical methods for categorical and multivariate data, and on the history of data and information visualisation.[1][2]


Born in New York City, Friendly obtained his BS in 1969 from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and his MS in 1969 from Princeton University. In 1971/2 he also obtained his PhD in psychology at Princeton under supervision of Harold Gulliksen and Peter Ornstein, with the thesis titled "Proximity Analysis and the Structure of Organization in Free Recall."[3][4]

Friendly's first research project in the field of psychometrics and cognitive psychology had started at the Educational Testing Service and Princeton University, and was made possible by a Psychometric Fellowship awarded by the Educational Testing Service. After graduation Friendly jointed the Department of Psychology at the York University in Ontario, Canada, where he continued his research. At the York University he was appointed Associate Professor and later on Professor of Psychology, and since 1985 also director of its Statistical Consulting Service.

Friendly is Associate Editor of the Journal of Computational and Graphical Statistics and an Editor of Statistical Science.


Friendly's research interests have developed over years. It started in the 1970s with the application of quantitative and computer methods to problems in cognitive psychology, including the cognitive aspects of extracting information from graphical displays.[5] In the 1990s Friendly started focussing on the history of statistics and data visualization, and furthermore graphical methods for data and information visualization.[6]


Friendly is the author of five books and numerous research papers. Books:

Articles, reports, papers. A selection:


  1. Young, Forrest W., Pedro M. Valero-Mora, and Michael Friendly. Visual statistics: seeing data with dynamic interactive graphics. Vol. 914. John Wiley & Sons, 2011.
  2. Rosenberg, Daniel, and Anthony Grafton. Cartographies of time: A history of the timeline. Princeton Architectural Press, 2013.
  3. Friendly, Michael L. "Proximity Analysis and the Structure of Organization in Free Recall." (1972).
  4. Michael Friendly at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  5. SAS System for Statistical Graphics,First Edition, 1st edition ABSTRACT From the Publisher. Retrieved 07 July 2008.
  6. Profiles of Faculty Members in the History and Theory of Psychology Area. Department of Psychology. York University. Retrieved 07 July 2008.
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/15/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.